Discount dental plans are fast becoming the number one alternative to traditional dental insurance. With more than 108 million Americans currently without some form of dental care coverage, it is more important than ever before that we discuss the benefits of discount dental plans.
Traditional dental insurance is virtually unaffordable if not provided by an employer. Therefore, individuals and families must have an alternative. For many, the perfect alternative is a discount dental plan. Discount dental plans offer flexible, convenient coverage that dental insurance policies lack. They’re also very affordable.
Top 5 Discount Dental Plan Benefits:
Discount dental plans are considerably more affordable than traditional dental insurance. A typical individual discount dental plan will cost you around $79.95, while a family plan will start at around $120. In a report released in 2005 by the National Association of Dental Plans, the average monthly premium paid for individual HMO dental insurance(Traditional) was nearly $16/month, or about $192/year, compared to even more($288/year) for individual PPO dental insurance and a whopping $372/year for individual indemnity insurance. As traditional dental insurance rates continue to rise at astonishing rates, discount dental plan rates do not. In fact, the NADP states, “Discount dental plans have become an economical and important alternative to combat the rising cost of health care. They are a cost-effective vehicle for millions of under-served consumers to improve their access to dental care.”
2) No Health Restrictions
Unlike some dental insurance providers, discount dental plan providers do not impose sometimes unfair health restrictions on members. In other words, you will receive the discount afforded to you according to your discount dental plan’s fee schedule if you have health problems or not. It is not uncommon for lower income people to suffer from untreated ailments, thus making a discount dental plan the only option in some cases.
3) No Paperwork to Fill Out
Nobody likes arriving at the dentist only to spend 15 minutes filling out lengthy medical history and claim forms. With discount dental plans the only paperwork you fill out is the paperwork required to purchase your plan. Claim forms don’t even enter the equation.
4) Quick Activation
If you’ve ever tried to enroll with an insurance provider, you know that the wait can be unbearable – especially if you’re in immediate need of insured care. Discount dental plans, on the other hand often activate within 1-3 days, depending on the provider you enroll with. Within this time period, a discount card is mailed out to you, and you are often provided with immediate access to plan information, including fee schedules, and local participating dentists.
5) Direct Access for Individuals, Families, and Groups
Traditional dental insurance is rarely directly accessible to the general public – in terms of either policy or expense. However, discount dental plans are available directly to the general public. You can access and enroll in a plan right over the web in most cases. This is true for individuals, families, and groups alike. In fact, one of the largest segments of dental plan enrollees belongs to small businesses who find traditional dental insurance unaffordable.
The National Association of Dental Plans (NADP) considers discount dental plans as a viable, cost-effective alternative: “With an estimated 45 percent of Americans not having any type of dental coverage, and the dental insurance marketplace offering few, affordable dental products for individuals, discount dental plans are an attractive answer to the need to reduce consumer out-of-pocket costs and increase access to care.”