Our Top Affordable Dental Plans (2018 Reviews)

Dental visits can be sometimes unpleasant, and we may try avoiding them until there is an urgent need for our teeth to be appropriately treated.

Our oral health is essential and we, shouldn’t take it for granted by any means. Just as any other body part, the oral cavity requires regular check-ups and preventive procedures.

Therefore, there are a lot of great dental insurances and dental plans that will enhance the whole process for you and will even help you save money on the regular dental visits.

You can choose among different types of plans, and you can select the policy that will be the best fit your dental insurance requirements.

The whole process of choosing the right one can be confusing because there are a lot of high quality dental insurance companies on the market with different offer benefits to different customers. Before you buy a particular policy, be sure to carefully plan your budget and decide what your priorities that should be covered are.

To help you with the decision we have done a lot of reviewing of different insurance plans and important factors that need to be taken into account before the final purchase.

We believe that after going throughout the discussed plans and their features, you will be able to make a better choice regarding your future dental plan.

Most Recommended Dental Insurance Plans for Families & Individuals

1Dental – Best Plans

Highlights:

  • Quick activation of the membership
  • Saves up to 20%-60%
  • Unlimited use with no deductibles
  • Access to top rated dentists

Our Rating: 9.8/10

1Dental is one of the top-rated companies that strives towards offering the best to its customers. You can choose among several discount dental insurances that are operating as membership clubs. The price’s discount can reach even 60%, and there are is no need for monthly premiums payments.

When you become a member, you are entitled to choose your dentist, and you will be able to pay a lower price for their services. Members of the 1Dental savings plan are also not limited to the number of visits to the dentist’s office. All of the dentists are thoroughly checked before becoming part of the insurance network and are required to pass a work evaluation of 5 years.

Therefore, if you are not entitled to an insurance package from your employer, you need an immediate check-up, or you just want to save capital, then you are eligible for accessing the plan’s services.

DentalAccess$99 – Greatest Value

Highlights:

  • Annual dental insurance for $99
  • Access to 158,000 dentists
  • Prescriptions discounts at 60,000 Pharmacies
  • Warranty of 30 days

Our Rating: 9.6/10

The Dental Access plan is among the best savings option. As a BBB-accredited company, they strive towards bringing the most affordable solutions to its customers.

It also functions as a membership club, and the annual for one person is only $99. They provide an even higher discount for a group of 2 or 3 people and for each of these scenarios the fee is $149 or $179, respectively.

The insurance is created by the Aetna Network and by becoming a member, you are entitled to over 158,000 dentists throughout the whole nation. Also, you will be able to pay the fee directly at the dentists’ office, without being obliged to wait for any reimbursements, or being additionally exposed to complicated bureaucracy.

Aetna even offers additional discounts on drug prescriptions at more than 60,000 drug stores countrywide and rebates on more than 50,000 EyeMed eyewear providers.

HealthNetwork – Perfect for Individual

Highlights:

  • Covers all of the dental emergencies
  • Includes any dental examination
  • You can obtain full medical coverage
  • Additional ‘Give Back Program’ discounts

Our Rating: 9.4/10

HealthNetwork is probably one of the most widely used insurances. In addition to the dental coverage, it also offers a full medical insurance.

The good news is that you don’t have to subscribe to both programs if you don’t want to and you can choose only one of them. The company covers more than 18 million customers that provide positive reviews to the offered healthcare options.

The company provides inexpensive insurances, starting from $10 per month. As such, it is very affordable and attractive, and it covers any dental emergency, as well as thorough dental examination and other dental work. The company also protects its customers’ privacy, and it maintains its high level of integrity with them.

Along with the insurance coverage you are also entitled to a Give Back Program that offers additional discounts on drug prescription, MOOV tracker for running, athletic wear, fresh food delivery, etc.

Careington – Ideal for families & Individuals

Highlights:

  • Suitable for the whole family
  • 24/7 emergency access to specialists
  • 20%-%50 price discounts
  • It covers many dental procedures

Our Rating: 9.3/10

If you are looking for an insurance plan for you and all of your family members, then Careington is the right choice for you. It provides outstanding service for only $129 for you and an additional family member. That is up to 50% discount on the regular price.

Careington can provide such affordable alternatives that are on the lower end of the price spectrum due to its partnership with DenteMax. Both of the dental networks combined their forces and created a dental discount that is widely recognized throughout the nation. This combined network is called Maximum Care Discount, and its name speaks for its outstanding services.

The network is comprised of highly skilled dentists that offer the best quality services to the holders of the insurance plan. You can increase your savings with different dental procedures such as routine check-ups, teeth’s cleaning, x-ray scans, fillings, extractions, dentures, implants, etc.

Tips for Buying Dental Plans

Choosing and buying the best dental insurance can be a long and exhausting process. Therefore, we’ve created a list of things that you should pay attention to when you start looking for the right plan.

Premiums

The premium is just the cost you pay to obtain the dental insurance. The premium is always paid, regardless of the insurance policy type and it’s an inevitable element when buying the plan. However, each company offers policies at different premiums, and its price will also depend on the customers’ likelihood to use the policy during its lifetime.

Many companies have a mutual price for every customer, no matter the level of their oral health. Therefore, because the company does not perform due diligence to every customer before accepting their membership request, they have to compensate for any additional risk that may arise for them. The price also depends on the length of the policy and the items that are covered.

Also, no matter how cheesy it may sound, the philosophy behind the dental insurance is that our teeth are the most valuable asset on our face, and as such they must be adequately insured. As a consequence, the dental insurance premiums can exceed the cost of just paying out of the pocket when an emergency occurs or if you simply want to do a routine check-up.

However, the need for getting a top-rated dental insurance is statistically backed up. That’s because it covers any dental procedure, so on a yearly basis, an insured American can pay an average premium of $350, while out-of-pocket expenses can exceed $500. Because of that, make sure that the insurance you pay a premium for, covers any routine check-ups and most of the necessary procedures such as root canal and fillings and significant procedures as implants and dentures. Make sure that the dentist you want to see will accept the insurance too. Also, clearly define your budget and decide whether you can pay the full price.

Enrollment

The enrollment period is the time during which you can purchase a new dental insurance or make specific changes regarding it. The admission is open usually through the year – some companies have enrolment periods for their dental plans.

Some companies, in addition to the regular enrollment period, you are also entitled to a particular enrollment period that can be open if you are going through life-changing events and experiences. These events are also known as qualifying life events and encompass marriages and divorces, gaining new family members, or merely quitting or switching jobs. When some of these events happen, you can require the enrollment to be open.

The enrollment process is easy and straightforward. Once you have chosen the insurance provider, you can contact them and ask them to fill their enrollment form. You can do that by visiting them at their office, or you can fill the form online. You will have to provide all of your data, billing information and you will be asked to choose your desired policy type.

Many of the providers have outstanding customer care services, and you can rest assured that your private data will be protected and the whole process will be transparent. The providers always offer full support to their customers and have an open line 24/7. You can always contact them for any additional information or if you are experiencing any issues.

Hidden Fees

Hidden Insurance Fees

Hidden fees refer to the extra costs that are not stated upfront and cannot be identified. Most of the time customers are not even aware that they exist, because providers tend to neglect them when promoting a particular policy. These fees can be in the form of ongoing monthly premiums, the cap on services or any other kind of extra charge.

When we fail to notice the hidden fees until the moment we have to pay, we cannot help but feel as we are being played. Consequently, that will result in a negative review for the company that may damage its reputation.

Usually, the reason for hidden fees is the fact that insurance agents work based on commissions. For them to get paid, they need to profit on imposing more fees. One of the most profitable fees for insurance companies are the so-called administrative fees. These fees are usually charged when you want to make some changes to the policy for which the agents have to make two clicks on their keyboards.

Many insurance companies are shamed for these doings because they can quickly charge you for just changing your street address on the policy. You can also be charged for changing the telephone number, the name, etc. They can even go far and charge you for any changes that you make online. Therefore, before signing the insurance be sure to ask for any additional fees and to check what’s stated upfront in the contract thoroughly.

Deductibles

Almost every insurance policy has a deductible which is the amount that you put into the policy before it starts covering for you. The deductible should be stated in the contract, and once you agree to pay it, the company will agree to pay the remaining amount. The deductible procedure is the same for every insurance policy, but we’ve done a lot of reviewing regarding the case of dental insurances.

Put simply; the deductible is the amount of risk that you want to cover for yourself in any adverse situation that may occur. The insurance company will include a particular loss for you depending on how much you want to cover for the loss itself in the beginning. Therefore, by paying the initial amount, you can rest assured that the rest of it will be backed up by the company.

Before signing any policy, you need to check whether the deductible is stated in the contract and you need to check its amount. Many companies may state additional fees, and therefore it is crucial that you conduct thorough due diligence before activating the policy. You should also make sure whether several deductibles are charged for various circumstances.

Usually, the higher the deductible is, the cheaper the premium of the policy will be. You can choose how much money you want to put in, and as a ‘reward’ for bearing a big portion of the risk yourself, the company will reduce its further costs. That’s because of some of the reasons for the expensive premiums the moral hazard and the overall financial stability of the company.

Different Types of Plans That Are Available

As we have already mentioned, when you buy a dental insurance, you can tailor it according to your preferences regarding who you want to be covered and what you want it to include. Following in this review, you can read about the different types available on the market.

Individual Plans

The individual dental insurance is one of the most purchased types that is being purchased nowadays. As with any other policy, the individual has to pay the premium, and in some cases, it should also cover deductibles and annual maximums, but that’s optional, and it depends on the provider. You can pay the membership on an annual or monthly basis.

Before you buy the policy, you need to decide what exactly your requirements are and roughly anticipate the extent of coverage you will need. Have in mind that many providers offer coverage on preventive, as well as necessary and major dental procedures and you can make various combinations. Dental insurances are the best if you want to save additional money while still being able to cover for any potential emergencies.

Also, make sure to check the policy’s requirements and conditions before you sign the agreement. In some cases, there can be additional fees that you may not be aware of, and you need to make sure that all of them are stated. You need to know what you are eligible for with the purchase of the desired policy.

There are various types of perfect dental plan options that are available for individuals, and each of them has different benefits. Some of the possibilities may be a Preferred Provider Organization Plan, Indemnity plan, Dental Health Maintenance Organization, Discount Dental Plan, etc.

Family Plans

Best Family Dental Plan

The family insurance is designed to provide the best coverage for the whole family. Both the adults and the children can be covered with the insurance. Usually, the dental plan enrollment is optional, and there should not be any penalties if you decide to not include another family member in it. Some providers may even offer financial assistance when you want to buy such a plan and some may require that you need to obtain full medical coverage.

Usually, for children to be enrolled and entitled to the services, there must be at least one adult enrolled. When one child is registered, you will be probably required to enroll all of the children in the family, but there are no requirements that every adult should be enrolled. Once the enrollment process is finished, you can successfully use the best of the insurance.

Different providers have different contracts and different coverage. Make sure to check everything in advance, so that you know exactly what your family is eligible for. In most of the cases, any routine check-ups and necessary procedures are covered for each member. Also, you will be probably able to choose between two of them: dental health maintenance organization (DHMO) or dental preferred provider organization (DPPO).

By choosing DHMO, you will be able to play lower premiums without being subject to any deductible. Also, you can share the cost of dentures, implants and many other significant treatments. The DPPO, on the other hand, required a deductible and some significant dental expenses and services won’t be covered, but the beneficial thing is that they will incentivize you for choosing a particular provider.

Prevention Only Plans

In addition to the individual and family alternatives, there is another widely accepted alternative across the holders. It is known as the prevention only  dental plan. It’s created to cover any expenses related to the preventive check-ups and routine examinations. Usually, they are offered as an addition to the full programs, but if the customers want it can obtain the prevention plan.

These insurances are usually very generous with their coverage amounts, and they can even cover each cost associated with these types of dental insurances. Depending on the provider, the minimum coverage you can get is probably around 70% of the final price, but many providers offer even a full cost coverage. You should check all of the requirements and conditions before signing the contract so that you don’t get charged any extra costs.

Preventive dental services include regular check-ups, different cleanings, x-rays scans, some essential dental preventive treatments and it can also cover some tooth sealants. These procedures can be subject to certain limitations in the contract, such as age limits or limits on how many times these procedures will be covered throughout the whole duration of the plan. Some will include them only up to twice in the year, but that will also depend on the type of procedure you require.

Dental Savings Plans

These ones are not considered as an insurance type of policy, but they offer inexpensive dental care for every individual or various groups of individuals. They provide a price discount for almost every service or dental procedure. Usually, you can even obtain up to 60% discount on the initial cost of the service. The premium depends on the type of the procedure and the dentist’s location.

As we have already mentioned, these plans function as membership clubs and by becoming a member you need to pay an annual fee that’s stated up front. Once you are part of the policy, you can choose from the vast pool of dentists and their services that they provide on a daily basis. They can be beneficial for people who are not entitled to insurance from their employer, or for various businesses that find these plans as an affordable alternative for providing their employees with the appropriate dental care.

Probably the most attractive things about them are the benefits of not being obliged to pay deductibles and not having to deal with co-payments. There are no annual limits and complex bureaucratic work that has to be taken into consideration and are easy to be managed. If they don’t look as the best alternative already, let us tell you that many of them cover expenses that are not usually covered by regular insurances, such as cosmetic dentistry services and similar procedures.

What is Covered?

What’s covered with them can vary according to the provider, but usually, the core idea and philosophy is the same for most dental plans.

Limits on Procedures

Most are obtaining dental plans in case of an emergency or to protect their oral health and prevent the teeth from decay. Even though most of these procedures are usually covered, they are not included entirely. These parts that are not covered are the limitations of the plans. Also, some other methods are not a part of the contract and are not covered at all.

Before obtaining a plan, you should know exactly what you expect from it to cover. Most of the conditions are always listed in the contract so make sure you go through it in detail. Some of the procedures that are not covered are composite or silver fillings. Also, any cosmetic procedure such as whitening or onlays and inlays won’t be included.

One of the reasons why there are certain limitations is to protect the dentist. If for some reason you decide to change the policy, then they will be in violation of the contract if they accept a payment that’s not stated in the policy. However, the best thing about them nowadays is that you can reject the benefits of the policy and negotiate an amount with your dentist that will be not related to the plan.

Also, it won’t cover for any condition that you had before acquiring the plan. As a consequence, if you have problems at the time when you purchased the policy they won’t be covered. If you buy a policy that has any waiting period, then you will also not be entitled to any treatments during that period.

Coverage Percentages

Every dental insurance has its own structure regarding what it will cover and to which extent it will compensate you for the risk and its associated cost. The coverage percentage is closely related to any possible deductible and annual maximums, and therefore, you should always know in advance what is indeed covered by the dental insurance that you choose.

Usually, every customer that decides to become a member of a dental insurance is entitled to coverage with proportions of 100-80-50. These numbers are the percentage that will be covered when you decide to do a particular check-up or treatment. The insurance is designed to include preventive examinations, essential treatments, and significant procedures. Therefore, the numbers 100, 80 and 50 correspond to these procedures, respectively.

100% of the cost of preventive examinations will cover and these include routine check-ups, x-ray scans, and similar diagnostic care. When it comes to the necessary treatments, such as root canal, fillings, and extraction, the provider will usually cover 80%. Finally, if you decide to use the dental insurance to do significant procedures such as bridges, dentures, implants, and crowns, the company will cover only half of the total amount. Have in mind that even though it includes a particular part of the cost, the company will probably cover the cost until the annual maximum is reached.

Annual Maximums

The annual maximum is an essential part of almost every dental insurance out there, no matter the type and the provider of it. A simple explanation for this term is that is the maximum amount that will be covered by the plan when a cost is incurred, and it is usually stated in advance the timeframe during which it is applicable. For example, if the maximum amount is $500, then that’s how much it will be covered by the provider. Any excess cost should be included by you because it is your responsibility.

Sometimes there can be several maximum amounts attached to a single plan that will vary with the procedure that they cover. It’s common for orthodontic treatments to have a different annual maximum, compared to root canal or any other procedure of similar character. You should always check for these conditions when choosing the right policy. You should determine your exact needs so that you know how much coverage you will need. Also, you should determine your budget, because in the case when your maximum is reached, you will have to compensate for the cost out of your pocket.

However, the best thing about some dental plans is that they don’t have any annual maximums, and it’s good to invest your money in them. Before buying individual policies, be careful to consider all of the alternatives that may be affordable to you.

Dentist Network

The dentist network that you are eligible for depends on the type of plan that you have. Each provider has their network of dentist that are available for their customers. The dentists take care of their patients and try to provide the best service that they are eligible for. The dentist’s office will make sure that they meet the criteria of your plan and will notify you if for some reasons you do not qualify for their services.

They will also guide you through the whole process of activating the insurance and will help you solve any potential issues. They will better explain what your allowances and limitations regarding procedures are and if there are any waiting periods related to them. Depending on the dental plan that you have, you can either choose the dentist by yourself or be assigned to one.

Usually, with the Premium plans you can get a dentist of your choice, while with Health Maintenance Organization plans you will probably be assigned to one. However, if you obtain a Preferred Provider Organization plan, then you will have to pay a higher price to visit a dentist that’s working in the network. In such case sometimes is good to pay an additional fee to obtain better service. Have in mind that these plans are constructed as such because dentistry requires a lot of specialists that will deliver the best services.

Is Cheap Insurance Worth It?

Usually, the higher the price of the insurance, the better the insurance coverage. There is a saying that high quality dental plans comes at a price and we agree. Even though you need to determine your budget and your actual requirements before signing a contract, it is always to invest more money initially.

As we have said, the dental insurance will cover most of the primary and necessary dental procedures. Depending on your anticipated condition, you should evaluate how big you want the coverage to be. Many of the plans function in such a way that the more you pay in the beginning, the more of the procedures will be covered. That’s because with a higher payment, in the beginning, you are obliged to bear a more significant portion of risk, and due to that the plan will reward you for any further treatment.

If you don’t want to go through the whole process of changing plans and wasting time and money on that, then we believe that it’s the right choice to opt for a more expensive plan that will bring you the best results in times of adversity.

Our Final Thoughts

After you have gone through all of our reviews, we believe that many things are more transparent regarding your preferred plan. We know that the choices may be endless, but when you will be able to narrow your needs and requirements, and you will set an actual particular budget, the process will be straightforward.

Have in mind that no matter how attractive a particular plan may be, you should always perform your due diligence in case any hidden fees or conditions apply. These are different for every company, and you cannot know in advance what the policy will cover.

The plans vary in several aspects. They can provide coverage for individuals or families. Also, they can offer different benefits to students and seniors. They can provide coverage only for preventive procedures or even treat significant problems. We have outlined many of the specific features that each plan can have, and by understanding them, you will be able to make the right choice.

We hope that our extended review has been quite useful and that it helped you get a clearer picture of the best insurance plans. Have in mind that obtaining an ideal dental insurance is quite important nowadays and by carefully considering its every aspect you will be able to make the right decision.

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