If you are like most parents, you may not think much about how you can maximize your children’s dental insurance coverage. You have many other more pressing matters on your mind! But did you know that you could waste significant money if you don’t make sure they visit the dentist’s office twice a year and stay on top of any necessary treatments? What else can you do to save money, avoid losing valuable benefits, and most importantly, improve your child’s smile? Read on to learn a few helpful ways to get the most out of their plan before it expires at the end of the year.
Get Them in For a Second Dental Checkup
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and your child’s pediatric dentist both recommend twice a year dental checkups and cleanings for growing and developing smiles. Because children’s smiles are prone to developing cavities at a young age, these visits make it possible for team members to remove hardened plaque and tartar, reducing the risk for infection. Also, during these appointments, the pediatric dentist conducts a proper examination to check for signs of decay, disease, bite abnormalities, or problems with facial development. This type of preventive care for your child reduces the probability of problems in the future that require more costly and timely treatment.
Most dental insurance plans are designed to encourage preventive care, which is why you will find 80-100% coverage for these services in a majority of policies. Another beneficial aspect of these visits is that many companies are waiving their “six months and one day” policy because of COVID-19. Since many young patients were unable to see a dentist earlier in the year, you can bring them in for their second visit even if their first one occurred recently.
Don’t Put Off Complex Treatment
Your child may not want to hear that they need pulp therapy or a tooth extraction; however, in most cases, you should move forward with treatment now instead of waiting until next year. Here’s why:
If your child is covered under your insurance policy, you have an annual maximum that is allotted to you by your insurance company. This is provided to you should you or your child need necessary treatment during the calendar year. Any remaining balance left behind is returned to your insurer at midnight on December 31, which means you can lose thousands of your hard-earned dollars by letting this money go to waste.
Choosing to proceed with your child’s treatment will not only improve their oral health and the aesthetic of their smile, but it will also keep you from losing valuable benefits in 2020.
Select a Dentist In-Network with Your Insurance
Naturally, you want your child to see a dentist who believes in putting their patients first and is compassionate, fun, and gentle when performing any type of procedure. But it’s certainly beneficial if that pediatric dentist is in-network with your insurance company.
By choosing someone who has agreed to discounted rates for various services with your insurer, you can save lots of money in the long run. Although you are still able to receive coverage seeing an out-of-network dentist, you won’t receive the same level of savings. Ultimately, the choice is yours, but if you are hoping to spend more of your money on gifts for your loved ones this holiday season, you will want to consider an in-network dentist.
As another year comes to a close, make sure you get the most value from the benefits you’re entitled to. Discuss with your child’s dental team about ways to maximize your plan and help your little one’s oral health be the best it can be.
About the Author
Dr. J. Patrick Bowman is a board-certified pediatric dentist in Denver, CO. After earning his dental degree at the University of Kentucky, he completed a master’s degree in Biomedical Sciences and a two-year advanced training program in pediatric dentistry at the University of Toledo Medical Center. He has advanced training in growth and development, patient behavioral management, general anesthesia, and pediatric medicine. He and the team at Wash Park Pediatric Dentistry want to ensure you get the most out of your child’s dental insurance plan, which is why we will recommend helpful ways to maximize benefits and improve their smile before the end of the year. Contact us at (720) 647-6310 or visit our website to find out how we can help you.