Paying for Dental Care: A Primer

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Dental care can be expensive. Anybody who has ever walked into the dentist in pain or taken their children for a checkup already knows this. Unfortunately, the cost of dental care prevents a lot of people from getting the basic services they need.

However, just because dental care can be costly doesn’t mean you should skip it altogether. Eventually, you’ll be in enough pain or have such bad teeth that you’ll be forced into emergency services and come out with a whopping bill.

Use this primer to learn more about how you can pay your Brooklyn dentist. There could be more options out there than you think, and you may not need to suffer with yellow, cracked, broken or unattractive teeth any longer.

Dental Insurance

Dental insurance is designed to help you take care of your teeth without spending a lot of money out of pocket each time you go to the dentist. While it can seem costly, the fact is that most plans cost less than your cell phone or cable bill.

When you get dental insurance, you’ll find that many preventative services like cleanings are covered right away. This is to help make sure your teeth stay in excellent shape so you don’t need restorative work.

What dental insurance usually doesn’t cover right away is stuff like root canals and fillings. Unfortunately, you’ll have to pay out of pocket on these things. Depending on your plan, it could be six, 12 or 18 months before you’re covered for restorative work and oral surgery.

For Kids

If you’re worried about paying for dental care for your children you’re not alone. Luckily most health care exchanges set up by the government provide free dental care for children, at least when it comes to preventative care and basic services like fillings.

These plans are designed to help children grow up with healthy teeth so they won’t need major services as adults. Get your child enrolled through one of the exchanges during open enrollment and you usually won’t have a waiting period on care.

Discount Plans

Discount plans are simple, but many people don’t know about them. For a flat monthly or yearly fee, you’ll be given a list of dentists you can see and reduced prices on their services. Often called dental HMOs, these plans still require you to pay something out of pocket.

For example, a root canal that normally costs $500 could cost $250 to $300 if you have an effective discount plan. There are usually no waiting periods on discount plans once you pay your first premium.

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