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I’m writing you today because last year several of my patients made the same mistake: they left hundreds of dollars in dental insurance unused. It happened just as the clock struck midnight on Dec. 31, and you may have been a victim yourself.

I’m sure my Plano dental office will field many calls about insurance claims over the next few days, so I wanted to put together something you can use for your guideline to dental insurance for the next 12 months. I think you’ll be surprised to learn some of the ways your dental insurance provider is taking advantage of you. Forget co-pays and monthly premiums; there is something more going on with your dental insurance.

Don’t Get Caught by Surprise

Dental insurance companies are in the business of making money, so don’t expect them to offer you tips about how you can maximize your insurance dollars.

Most dental insurances we work with operate on a calendar year. While you pay a monthly premium, your dental insurance provides you with an annual allotment for your dental care. The average annual dental insurance amount is between $1,000 and $1,500. This is NOT a lot of money, especially considering how high premiums can be. Some patients may pay $40 or more a month for family insurance, have a high co-pay, and then receive a low annual allotment. On top of all this, most insurance companies only cover 50 percent of the procedures they ACTUALLY DO COVER.

Some patients think they can dupe the system by picking up dental insurance only when they need it. BEWARE of doing this, as many dental insurance providers will not cover major procedures like root canals or crowns during the first year of your coverage. Of course, most people can’t wait for 12 months or longer to treat their problems, so patients end up paying for the entire procedure out of pocket.

Keep Your Money, Resolve Your Dental Problems

What you do with your money is your own business. But I hate to see patients throw their money away. Year after year, I see countless patients fall into the same racket of having money taken from them by their insurance provider.

Sometimes patients forget to schedule their second visit of the year, or worse, they put off fixing their dental problems. This is particularly bad, because patients have the insurance assistance to help them maintain a healthy mouth and do not use it. Now, you may be asking yourself who lets you know that you have unused insurance dollars. Well, it certainly will not come from your insurance company, which will pocket any money you don’t spend by Dec. 31. We like to remind our patients to spend their insurance dollars before the end of the year.

Visit Our Office

Our practice works with your dental insurance provider so you don’t have to. We read the fine print so you can take advantage of the coverage made available to you.
If you’ve decided that dental insurance is not worth the cost, that’s OK, too. Our dental office will work with you to finance your dental treatments. At 1st In Smiles, we offer in-office financing options and carry CareCredit, which allows patients to finance dental treatment with easy, no-interest payments.

Our goal is to give you great, affordable care. Keep this post handy to remind yourself the ways in which you can use dental insurance. Call our office today at 972-380-8105 to schedule your first appointment with us.