Getting dental insurance is smart on a number of levels. You never quite know when an unpleasant dental surprise will hit, so having insurance can give you some peace of mind. Here are some ways to realize the maximum possible benefits from your dental insurance.
Identify the Best Dental Insurance Provider for You
There are many choices in the dental marketplace, but they are all not created equal. You should look for a provider that does not have an annual cap on benefits so expensive treatments can be covered. In addition, some providers have larger networks than others. When dental insurance has a small network, it is difficult to find the right dentist. Finally, and most importantly, you should determine the providers that cover the highest percentage of dental work because insurance is not worth much if it does not cover anything for you.
Do Your Preventative Care
Dental procedures are grouped into three categories: preventive, basic, and major. To promote healthy practices, it is common for dental insurance to cover all or most of the preventive care, some of the basic care, and a smaller portion of major procedures. Especially since it costs you little, you should make sure to do all of the preventive care. This is what saves you from having to do the major and extremely expensive work down the road. Given how much is covered, preventive work is largely just an investment of time instead of money.
Remain in Your Network
Assuming that your insurance has a large enough network, there is really no reason to go out of the network for anything. Dental insurance will pay little to nothing if you are not in their network because the provider does not have an agreement with the dentist. Using your plan doctors will get you the most possible coverage. This is when you can save the most money. If you are having procedures with little to no reimbursement, there really is no need to have dental insurance. Most dentists in a network will not send you a balance bill for what the insurance does not cover so your costs are capped at your co-pay amount.
If you have dental insurance, make sure to use it correctly in order to minimize your out-of-pocket costs. In this way, you are getting your money's worth for your insurance plan.
Buying life insurance now provides a financial safety net for your dependents later if you’re not around to take care of them. After you’re gone, your family can use the proceeds to cover funeral costs, mortgage payments, college tuition and other expenses.
There are two main types of life insurance:
Term Life Insurance is the easiest to understand and has the lowest prices. You can get term life insurance quotes online.
Permanent Insurance is more complex and tends to cost more than term, but it offers additional benefits. Whole life is the most well-known and simplest form of permanent life insurance. Other kinds of permanent life insurance include universal, variable and variable universal.
Term life insurance
Term life insurance provides coverage for a certain time period. If you have a term policy and die within the term, your beneficiaries receive the payout. The policy has no other value.
You choose the term when you buy the policy. Common terms are 10, 20 or 30 years. With most policies, the payout, called the death benefit, and the cost, or premium, stay the same throughout the term.
When you shop for term life:
-Choose a term that coincides with the years you’ll be paying the bills and want life insurance coverage in case you die early.
-Buy an amount your family would need if you were no longer there to provide for them. The payout could replace your income and help your family pay for services you perform now, such as child care.
Ideally, your family’s need for life insurance will end around the time the term expires: Your kids will be on their own, you’ll have paid off your house, and you’ll have plenty of money in savings to serve as a financial safety net.
Whole life insurance
Like all permanent life insurance policies, whole life provides lifelong coverage and includes an investment component known as the policy’s cash value. The cash value grows slowly, tax-deferred, meaning you won’t pay taxes on its gains while they’re accumulating.
You can borrow money against the account or surrender the policy for the cash. But if you don’t repay policy loans with interest, you’ll reduce your death benefit, and if you surrender the policy, you’ll no longer have coverage.
Although it’s more complicated than term life insurance, whole life is the most straightforward form of permanent life insurance. Here’s why:
-The premium remains the same for as long as you live
-The death benefit is guaranteed
-The cash value account grows at a guaranteed rate
Some whole life policies can also earn annual dividends, a portion of the insurer’s financial surplus. You can take the dividends in cash, leave them on deposit to earn interest or use them to decrease your premium, repay policy loans or buy additional coverage. Dividends are not guaranteed.
If you want to discuss options about your life insurance, we recommend speaking with an independent insurance agent like George Beach Insurance Services. We work for you the client, and not a particular big company.
The term "vision insurance" is commonly used to describe health and wellness plans designed to reduce your costs for routine preventive eye care and prescription eyewear such as eyeglasses and contact lenses. Some vision plans also offer discounts on elective vision correction surgery, such as LASIK and PRK.
You can get vision insurance in one of two ways: as a standalone plan or as combined with your dental plan.
Going to the doctor, going to the dentist—all part of taking care of your health. But going to the eye doctor? Also important! Eye exams at every age and life stage can help keep your vision strong. Many people think their eyesight is just fine, but then they get that first pair of glasses or contact lenses and the world comes into clearer view—everything from fine print to street signs.
Only Your Eye Doctor Knows for Sure
Eye diseases are common and can go unnoticed for a long time—some have no symptoms at first. A comprehensive dilated eye exam by an optometrist or ophthalmologist (eye doctor) is necessary to find eye diseases in the early stages when treatment to prevent vision loss is most effective.
During the exam, visual acuity, depth perception, eye alignment, and eye movement are tested. Eye drops are used to make your pupils larger so your eye doctor can see inside your eyes and check for signs of health problems. Your eye doctor may even spot other conditions such as high blood pressure or diabetes, sometimes before your primary care doctor does.
Vision Care Can Change Lives
Early treatment is critically important to prevent some common eye diseases from causing permanent vision loss or blindness:
-Cataracts (clouding of the lens), the leading cause of vision loss in the United States
-Diabetic retinopathy (causes damage to blood vessels in the back of the eye), the leading cause of blindness in American adults
-Glaucoma (a group of diseases that damages the optic nerve)
-Age-related macular degeneration (gradual breakdown of light-sensitive tissue in the eye)
Why get a vision insurance plan?
-Protect your eye health. Routine vision care may not be covered by your health plan.
-Save money. A vision insurance plan may reduce your out-of-pocket costs for eye care.
-Maximize benefits. Receive discounts on vision expenses like glasses or even LASIK.
-Get personalized service.
The two popular Vision Insurance Carriers in California are VSP and Humana.
If you want to discuss options about your vision insurance, we recommend speaking with an independent insurance agent like George Beach Insurance Services. We work for you the client, and not a particular big company.
PPO Dental Insurance Plans
Dental PPO insurance plans, also known as dental preferred provider organizations or DPPOs, are a popular dental insurance option due to their flexibility in allowing insured members to choose dentists and dental specialists. Typically, PPO dental insurance plans are said to offer better service and have less limitations than HMO dental insurance plans, but the premiums are usually more costly. Businesses often use PPO dental insurance plans to provide their employees with a valuable dental benefit. PPO dental insurance plans are used by individuals and families as well.
Dental preferred provider organizations are managed care organizations with a network of dentists under contract with a dental insurance carrier. This network of dentists provides dental PPO insurance plan members with special rates on dental care. The rates are usually lower if the insured member selects a primary dentist and/or dental specialists from the dental PPO network, but the insured individual still has the freedom to choose a dental care provider outside of the established network.
Direct buy PPO Dental Plans are available through the following carriers: Humana, Delta Dental, Nationwide and Renaissance and Careington.
Covered California offers PPO Dental Plans through the following carriers: Anthem Blue Cross, Delta Dental, and Premier Access.
HMO Dental Insurance Plans
Dental HMO insurance plans, also known as dental health maintenance organizations or DHMOs, are usually much cheaper than PPO dental insurance plans and dental indemnity insurance plans. HMO dental insurance plans have networks of dentists under contract with the dental insurance company that offer dental services to insured members at pre-determined rates. HMO dental insurance plans are usually used by businesses to insure their employees, but can be used by individuals and families as well. Individuals who do not receive dental insurance through their employers often turn to HMO dental insurance plans as an option.
One of the main advantages of HMO dental insurance plans is that they usually have lower premiums than the other dental insurance options. Regrettably, HMO dental insurance plans have been known to impose strict restrictions on insured members. For example, the dental HMO will not provide a reimbursement if the insured sees a dentist that is not in their network. People insured with HMO dental insurance plans must select a primary dentist from a pre-approved list. All referrals to dental specialists must be provided by the primary dentist.
Covered California offers HMO Dental Plans through the following carriers: California Dental Network, Dental Health Services, Delta Dental, Access Dental, and Liberty Dental Plan of California.
Healthy teeth are important to your child's overall health. From the time your child is born, there are things you can do to promote healthy teeth and prevent cavities. For babies, you should clean teeth with a soft, clean cloth or baby's toothbrush. Avoid putting the baby to bed with a bottle and check teeth regularly for spots or stains.
What Are The Key Differences Between DHMO and DPPO?
One of the key differences between dental HMO insurance and dental PPO insurance is that DPPOs usually allow dentists to spend more time with insured patients. Dentists in dental HMO insurance plans are expected to see a certain number of patients, so some dentists have been known to rush through dental appointments. Additionally, participants in HMO dental insurance plans often complain about tiresome referral and claims procedures. Despite some of the restrictions and limitations associated with this type of dental insurance, HMO dental insurance plans are a feasible option for many people due to their low cost in relation to other dental insurance plans.
Dental Indemnity Insurance Plans
Dental indemnity insurance plans are fee-for-service insurance plans that require insured members to pay dentists directly for dental services rendered. People covered by dental indemnity insurance receive compensation from the insurance company by submitting claim forms. Dental indemnity insurance plan members often have to wait a long time to receive their reimbursement from the dental insurance carrier, and are expected to pay the difference if the dentist’s fee is greater than the reimbursement.
Employees and/or group members on a dental indemnity insurance plan can choose dentists, change dentists, and even see a dental specialist without a referral. Despite this freedom, many individuals, families and businesses shy away from dental indemnity insurance plans because of the costly premiums, high annual deductibles, and exhausting claims procedures. Typically, dental indemnity insurance plans are structured to insure groups, so they are usually not good options for individuals and families looking for dental insurance. But if you do need a plan with a higher-than-usual annual cap, some companies do sell indemnity plans to individuals.
Aflac has a Dental Indemnity Plan available which allows you to either have the dentist bill Aflac or the patient can pay cash to the dentist and submit a claim. Paying cash to the dentist it usually allows the patient to negotiate a lower price.
If you want to discuss options about your dental insurance, we recommend speaking with an independent insurance agent like George Beach Insurance Services. We work for you the client, and not a particular big company.