10 Interesting Facts About Dental Insurance.

  1. No dental insurance existed in the United States until 1954 when California introduced the first plan.
  2. In 1972, most dental plans covered $1,000 to $1,500 per year and crown fees were around $400 and insurance would pay for 80 percent. 45 years later, most plans still have $1,000 to $1,500 annual limits, but today’s crown prices have more than doubled...
  3. Dental insurance is no longer insurance. It is assistance, and only exists because it has become a traditional benefit.
  4. Many routine dental services are NOT covered by insurance carriers.
  5. Insurance companies will often “down-code” or apply an “alternate benefit” to a procedure in order to pay less.
  6. Many Insurance Companies tell their insured that they’ll be covered “up to 80% or up to 100%”. But most plans cover about 40% to 60% of an average fee.
  7. Some dental insurance companies will downgrade the service your dentist provides to use a material that is cheaper.
  8. Dental insurance companies usually conduct surveys to calculate the average cost of dental procedures. They also include discount dental clinics in the survey and therefore the actual expenses are always higher than the estimates.
  9. It has been the experience of many dentists that some insurance companies tell their customers that “fees are above the usual” rather than saying to them that “our benefits are too low”.
  10. Your insurance company will sometimes try to encourage you to use a “Preferred Provider”. These dentists are “preferred” by the insurance company because they have agreed to cut their fees in order to get more patients. But you need to understand that Preferred Providers may use cheaper materials and cheaper foreign dental labs.
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