Ensuring the well-being of your health constitutes taking care of your oral health. The mouth is the mirror of the body, offering clues on the status of overall health. Oral health is also linked to various diseases and medical conditions such as endocarditis, cardiovascular disease, and pregnancy.
Without proper oral hygiene, naturally-occurring bacteria in your mouth can lead to oral infections like tooth decay and gum disease. Oral infections, especially when unattended, can play a role in the acquisition of illness.
Dentists advise regular dental care to avoid oral conditions from worsening. Brushing and flossing will help in alleviating the risk of dental problems.
The Necessity of Dental Check-Up
Another important practice that must never be neglected is bi-annual dental visit. A dental visit allows early detection of tooth decay, periodontal diseases, and even oral cancer. Through a dental checkup, appropriate actions can be taken to prevent serious problems, saving your pockets from costlier treatments due to lack of preventive care.
Despite the benefits of a dental visit, many fail to comply with the twice-a-year suggested frequency. According to the American Dental Association (ADA), 20 percent of adults in the United States had not visited their dentist in the last few years. One in ten adults only sees their dentist once every two to three years.
Regular dental care is vital to health. It prevents severe problems while saving your pockets from more significant costs imposed by the lack of preventive care.
The 2015 Oral Health and Well-Being in the United States report by the ADA revealed that 59 percent of individuals chose to opt out of their bi-annual dental visits due to cost. Cost tops the list of reason, followed by fear, and inability to find a convenient location or appointment. The figures are unsurprising as dental fees rose by 20 percent over the past decade.
But, people need not shoulder those expensive dental procedures. People can subscribe to either dental insurance or a dental discount plan to lessen the expenses of their dental treatments.
Dental Insurance versus Dental Discount Plan
A form of health insurance, dental insurance protects policyholders from the costs of dental procedures. An insured individual can save 50 to 100 percent on treatments like annual routine care, fillings, root canals, bridges, crowns, among others.
On the one hand, a discount plan is a membership-based program that grants payments on the maintenance and intervention on dental health at discounted rates at participating dental providers. Savings from a discount plan usually amount up to 60 percent.
Both dental insurance and a dental discount plan diminish the costs of dental treatments by offering pre-regulated rates and claims to their members. They also both require getting the dental procedure at participating dental providers. Both programs are renewable annually.
Dental insurance costs at around $350 a year and billed monthly. It also involves deductibles of approximately $25 to $50, annual limits between $1,000 to $1,500, and waiting periods. Dental insurance rarely covers orthodontics and cosmetic dentistry.
A dental discount plan is cheaper, usually about half the price of dental insurance. It does not have a deductible, cap, and waiting period. Additionally, it can also offer savings on orthodontics and teeth whitening that dental insurance may not provide.
However, note that the coverage and features of both programs depend on the policy you subscribed.
Before signing up to either program, look at your options well. It does not hurt to thoroughly research on what you are entering, especially when it comes to the scope of the program.
It is best to assess your oral health to ensure that your program is aligned to your dental needs.