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Getting The Most From Your Dental Insurance Plan

By Nicole Mitchell


Is it just us, or is the mouth a part of the human body? So why do we have separate insurance for our body AND mouth when our oral health affects our overall health? Those questions aside, let’s talk about dental insurance, its inception, and how you can get the most benefit from your dental plan.

Dental insurance was started by a group of dentists in 1954 after seeing the need to incorporate plans into employee benefit programs for organized labor unions. It was created to encourage people to visit the dentist and help defray the cost. In 1966 these unions collaborated with Delta Dental Plans Association to provide coverage across the states for employees, and soon other companies were offering dental as well. Pretty exciting stuff, huh? Ok, so not really, but you might find the following numbers interesting regarding dental insurance and inflation in the United States:

Average:                                              1975                                       2015

Median Income                                $12, 686                                $51,759

New house                                         $48,000                                $270,200

New Car                                              $3800                                   $31,252

Gasoline                                              $0.59/gallon                       $2.38/gallon

Sugar                                                    $0.65/5lbs                           $3.25/5lbs

Milk                                                      $1.65/gallon                       $3.49/gallon

Eggs                                                      $0.84/dozen                       $2.08/dozen

Dental Insurance Maximum             $1000                                    $1000




Your eyes are not deceiving you; the average dental plan maximum has not changed in 40 years.

Ready for some good news? Insurance companies are starting to offer enhanced benefits with some plans. So what is our advice for getting the most bang for your buck out of your dental insurance?


Use your preventative oral hygiene check-up and cleaning benefit. In other words, see your dental hygienist regularly!


Besides the obvious oral health as well as overall health benefits, seeing your hygienist regularly can not only prevent the need for more extensive dental procedures, it can actually increase the value of your dental plan. Here are some enhanced benefits dental insurance plans may offer:


  • More than 2 cleanings a year- Patients with diabetes, periodontal disease, pregnant females and other medical conditions may be eligible for additional teeth cleanings per year.
  • “Free” cleanings- free as in the benefit paid out for exams, cleanings and x-rays don’t deduct from your yearly maximum, leaving your maximum untouched to go towards procedures like fillings and crowns.
  • Roll over benefits- If you have your teeth cleaned during the benefit year of your plan and you have remaining funds in your maximum at the end, all or a portion of those benefits gets added to next year’s maximum as a reward for taking care of your oral health.It is important to note not every dental plan has these additional benefits, and it may take an inquiry to your HR department or insurance company to find out the exact details of yours. Either way, they are your benefits-don’t miss out! Use them to your advantage, and if your plan doesn’t offer any of these enhancements, at least you can take comfort in knowing you are taking steps towards an overall healthier, happier you.
Bring your whole family to one convenient location for all their dental needs.
…Treat Others As You Would Have Them Treat You … Matthew 7:12