Don't Wait: Use Your Dental Benefits Before You Lose Them

Are you getting the most out of your dental insurance? You’re not if you let them expire!

If your dental insurance plan is like most, your benefits expire at the end of the year and reset on January 1st of the next year.

Using dental benefits before the end of the year is the best way to ensure that you are getting the most out of your dental insurance. It’s somewhat like a gym membership in which you pay for the entire year but quit going after the first couple of weeks – you lose your investment.

Great Ways to Maximize Your Dental Benefits before they Expire

Use your FSA, if you have one

Be sure to use your flex spending account (FSA), if you participated in one through your employer this year. Most flex spending accounts allow you to use your FSA funds to pay for out-of-pocket expenses that your insurance plan does not cover, but most FSA plans require you to use the money before the end of the year or lose it.

Avoid paying your deductible every year

Depending on your plan, you will likely need to pay a deductible when you first need treatment in a coverage year. Deductible fees are usually separate from your co-pay and required once a year only if you need restorative work, such as a filling or a crown, but not preventative work. This means you can pay less in deductibles if you get all your restorative work done by the end of the year and then do only preventative work the following year. If you spread the restorative treatment over the course of two years, you will have to pay the deductible for both years.

Plan ahead

Keep in mind that you probably aren’t the only one using dental benefits before the end of the year: dentists that take dental insurance often experience “sales seasonality,” or peaks at different times of the year for various services. May and June are typically slow for dental appointments, according to the American Dental Association’s New Dentist Blog, primarily because students are finishing up the school year. Appointments pick up significantly towards the end of the year, however, and the increase is driven largely by patients trying use their dental benefits before they lose them.

Use your benefits for routine work

Don’t need major work done? Schedule your routine dental examinations and cleanings. If your dentist has suggested that you come back every six months, you can get into the routine of visiting in December just before your benefits end and in June, when appointments are easy to schedule.

Take care of small problems this year before they become big problems next year

Most dental problems are easier – and less expensive – to resolve when they are in their earliest stages, and more costly and complicated later on. Filling a small cavity is much easier and less expensive than replacing a decayed tooth with a dental crown, for example.

What’s more, insurance coverage is usually better when it comes to small problems. Insurance will typically pay 80 percent for a filling, according to Forbes Advisor, but only 50 percent for a crown.

Avoid price hikes

Scheduling your appointments before the end of this year could help you avoid any potential rate increases next year. While dentists try to keep their rates competitive, dental offices have high overhead expenses that can drive up patient rates.

Get the Most Out of Your Dental Benefits at Liberty Family Dental

At Liberty Family Dental, we accept all types of dental insurance Bloomington residents most typically use. To make it easier for you to get the most out of your dental insurance benefits by offering a personalized insurance benefits check on your first visit, so you will know exactly what your insurance covers before you start any treatment.

Beat the crowds – be sure to schedule your appointment now, before the end-of-the-year rush. Contact your affordable dentist at Liberty Family Dental today to schedule an appointment. Call 812.339.2811 or schedule an appointment online.

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