Dental insurance is one of those things that most people purchase without thinking. After all, who doesn’t want their teeth in the best condition possible, not to mention the legitimate concerns people have about the cost of emergency treatment that they have little warning for finding the money for. All eventualities are covered with an insurance policy, and many families will go ahead and purchase one without much thought.
And therein lies the problem: without much thought. This is a big financial commitment which also has a high influence on your health and well being, so it’s time to take the process of selecting cover for oral health issues a little more carefully. Here’s a few things to think of:
1. Do you need it?
If you do not have children, for example, it may be worth figuring out if you actually need any coverage. If money is tight then it is probably better to be safe than sorry and have that back up, but if you generally have some cash to spare then insurance may be a waste of time. It may be a better idea to put a small amount of money into a high-yield savings account every month, and reserve the usage of this to only be spent on dental treatments. This way you’ll actually increase the value of the money you’re setting aside, unlike insurance.
2. It is worth it?
You need to scan the policy document as thoroughly as possible; don’t be caught by surprise when it’s too late to cancel and you find yourself needing to make a claim. Know exactly what you’re paying for and, most importantly, what the exclusions on the policy are. This sounds like basic advice but a frightening number of people just buy and pay every month, discarding the policy booklet the moment they have it and only discovering their mistake when they actually need the insurance. Don’t be one of those people.
3. Consider other options.
Dental cards are a much maligned but nevertheless valid alternative, so make sure you consider all possibilities. It’s also worth discussing the matter with your dentist; they may have a payment plan option in the case of you needing treatment, meaning you can pay your bill off in stages. This means you only pay out when you actually need treatment, but is of course at the discretion of dentists.
With all of these considerations in mind, you are now better equipped to make the right decision.