We all want to find ways to help with the high costs of dental care. Procedures can be expensive, and more and more employers aren’t offering dental insurance in their benefits package. Even if you do have insurance, you still have deductibles, copayments and caps on the amount that’s covered per year. Here are 10 ways to help lower your dental costs:
1. Brush daily or more. Brushing your teeth helps prevent the tooth decay that can lead to cavities and the need for dental work.
2. Floss daily. Flossing regularly helps prevent gum disease. Gum disease can lead to serious dental health problems and the need for expensive care. Flossing regularly also helps control bad breath.
3. Be aware of the foods you eat. Sugary foods, citrus foods and acidic drinks can damage teeth.
4. Get regular dental checkups. Prevention is one of the best ways to save on dental care. Regular checkups can catch problems — such as the start of a cavity — before they become something much more expensive to fix, like a root canal.
5. Get regular teeth cleanings. Cleanings help keep your gums healthy. The costs for cleanings and checkups are a lot less than root canals, crowns or dental surgery.
6. If you have insurance, try to split the costs between plan years. If you need extensive work that will max your annual cap on expenses see if you can start the work at the end of the year and finish it at the beginning of the next year. Check with your dental insurance company to make sure they don’t have a lifetime maximum cap or other restrictions.
7. Use dental providers that are in your dental insurance network. Using preferred providers in your dental plan can save you a lot on costs.
8. See if you dentist can work out a payment plan. A payment plan is one way to help you afford to get the work done before it blossoms into something more expensive.
9. Prioritize dental work. You dentist may list out all of the ways to put your mouth in tip-top shape, but some procedures may be able to wait. Have your dentist help prioritize the most important procedures first.
10. Get a discount dental plan. Discount dental plans are alternatives to dental insurance, and can be an affordable way to lower your dental costs. With a dental discount plan, you pay an annual membership fee and then present your membership card to a participating dentist. The dentist will then charge you a discounted fee for services.
Check out dental discount plans.
Justin Scott is a free-lance writer. He recommends the comparison site LowerYourInsurance.com to get free dental plan quotes and dental discount plan comparisons.