Insurance plans frequently include stipulations that try to shift the cost of dental care back onto you. However, the end of the year may offer an opportunity for you to get the most value out of your insurance providers. If you want the best value out of your dental benefits, here’s why you should schedule a dental appointment with Monroe & Monroe Implant & General Dentistry in Pinehurst, NC before the New Year.
1. The Yearly Max
Most dental insurance plans have an annual maximum coverage cap. This amount is usually somewhere between $1,000 and $1,500 per person, and renews every year on the first of the year. Since this amount resets in January, it makes sense to use up to your maximum if you can.
2. Fee Increases
Because of the increasing cost of materials and equipment needed for operations, dental offices must raise their fees from time to time. As the New Year begins, providers often take the opportunity to review their pricing to determine whether fee increases are necessary. If you wait until after the New Year, you may end up paying a higher co-pay. So it is recommended to schedule your appointment in December, before any potential fee increases.
3. Overlapping Years
If you have multiple costly dental procedures or treatments that you need, it is possible to schedule them to start before – and complete after – the start of the New Year. This is a smart way to reduce your out-of-pocket costs by dipping into the maximums of two benefit years.
Most dental plans will not pay out for your dental care until you have already paid out a specific amount of money out-of-pocket — called a deductible — towards them first. Once you’ve met your deductible, consider scheduling an appointment with the Drs. Monroe for any procedure you may have been putting off. After all, once January 1st rolls around, you’ll be stuck with a brand new deductible.
If your employer offers a Flexible Spending Account (FSA) to which you contribute out of your paycheck on a pre-tax basis, it makes sense to use your entire deduction amount for the year. If not, you will be letting go of any FSA contributions you don’t use by the end of year deadline. If you have a Health Savings Account (HSA), you can also use the balance to improve your oral health without suffering any tax penalties.
6. Monthly Premiums
Since you are already paying monthly premiums for dental insurance, you really should be using those benefits to maintain your dental health. Many people act as if dental insurance is a “break glass in case of emergency” measure against paying high costs for unexpected dental procedures. However, even if you don’t currently have any serious dental concerns, you should make use of your dental insurance benefits. Undergoing routine services such as cleanings can help spot minor issues before they become serious, allowing you to avoid the need for complicated, high-cost procedures.
7. Dental Problems Will Get Worse
Although many of us put off things we don’t want to do, especially when we think it’s going to be uncomfortable, it isn’t always the best choice. Unfortunately, the vast majority of dental issues will only worsen with time. Procrastination tends to lead to more discomfort and higher costs when you finally do seek treatment.
If you go see your dentist now, before the end of the year, you are likely to pay less for your treatment. On the other hand, if you wait, you may end up having to pay more and your dental insurance provider may not be willing to contribute as much. To learn more about the insurance and payment options we accept at Monroe & Monroe Implant & General Dentistry, call our offices at 910-420-3670.