The need for senior dental insurance has always been high as there is very little coverage provided by Medicare. When choosing a plan, therefore, it is important to pay attention to your budget as well as your current dental needs. There are different types of senior dental insurance plans available. They have been explained in brief as follows:
- Preferred provider organizations (PPO) insurance plans offer a flexible plan that is less expensive than more traditional indemnity plans. By joining these plans, one is offered discounted dental service if one chooses to go to any dentist who serves under contract with this insurance carrier. You do have the freedom, however, to go to a dentist outside this network. Payment is made directly to the dentist and the insured sum is then reimbursed.
Although the plan is cheaper than most traditional plans, it is still more expensive than other options.
- Dental Health Maintenance Organizations (HMO) Plans are senior dental insurance plans that are cheaper than PPO plans. They function much the same as PPO plans by providing coverage for visits to dentists that work under contract for their organization. However, unlike PPO plans, members are assigned to a group of dental professionals from whom they must choose. Flexibility is thus absent in these plans.
- Dental Indemnity Insurance is a more of a traditional plan. Patients go to a dentist of their choice and pay directly. A portion of the amount (50–80%) is then reimbursed by the insurance firm. These plans thus offer the most flexibility. However, they are losing popularity due to the high premiums and deductibles. It is more suited for businesses than individuals and families.
Senior dental insurance may be refused or premiums may be higher if you have a pre-existing dental condition or if the dental problem has already manifested itself. You must, therefore, consider many factors when looking for a senior dental insurance plan that works for you. It may be helpful to evaluate your own needs before making a decision.