Dental Implants, Insurance, and Payment
Rarely do patients come to me in need of dental implants without questions about costs, insurance, and payments. This issue of Dental Digest will hopefully shed some light on these issues.
- Dental insurance does not behave like medical insurance. Dental insurance has a maximum, meaning once your insurance company pays out that amount, they will not pay any more for that benefit period, typically a calendar year. Therefore, if your plan’s maximum is $1,500 and your expected treatment is $5,000, your responsibility will be $3,500.
- Implant coverage: We are finding more and more policies cover dental implants, but this is a very broad and general statement. When someone undergoes dental implant treatment, there are multiple services that are performed. Coverage for each service is what you need to know. Examples of these services may include: the implant itself, an abutment, a crown, extractions, and grafting. Also, remember the point made above: once the maximum is reached, the insurance company will not pay out any additional funds.
- Pre-determinations: When you ask your dentist to find out what your plan covers, you are asking for a pre- determination. However, these documents serve very little purpose, except to find out if a procedure is covered under your plan. IT IS NOT A GUARANTEE OF PAYMENT! Just because the document states it is a covered procedure does not mean that it will be paid. There are MANY limitations and exclusions that apply. BEWARE!
- Dental implants should be thought of as an investment, not an expense. You are investing your time and financial resources into your health. Understanding this concept will help you get away from the restrictive nature of insurance and guide you towards other methods of affording dental implants.
In my practice, we perform many dental implant procedures for our patients and the patients of other dentists. We recognize the financial needs of people, and we offer many opportunities for people to be able to afford the treatments they need and desire:
- Cash & Check Discounts: Many people have the funds for the services they are requesting, but like all smart consumers, they look for discounts. We will offer those discounts for payments made my cash & check.
- Home Equity Lines Of Credit: If you own your own home, and with interest rates so low, this is the cheapest money you can borrow. You pay yourself back as you see fit, with no (to little) penalties.
- Healthcare Financing Companies: There are multiple companies that will lend money for your healthcare needs. Some examples are CareCredit, Lending Club, and Health Credit Services. Plans offered by these companies range from interest-free loans to extended loans at higher interest rates.
In summary, whether your needs are a single implant or complex care such as All-On- Four®, insurance, financing, and your thought process are all important considerations. We help our patients every day with these considerations here at Morris County Dental Associates.
Schedule a consultation
For a consultation, including a free 3-D scan (if necessary), please call the office at (973) 328-1225.