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College students often don’t have dental insurance because they are no longer covered by their parents, or can’t access group benefits. Yet students still need dental care. If you are a student, or you’re a parent with a child headed to college, here are some options to help pay for dental care.

If you need dental emergency care, you may first want to check with your dentist to see if they offer a reasonable payment plan. The last thing you want to do is make a painful situation worse. You don’t want a cavity to turn into a root canal, or suffer through the pain of wisdom teeth that need to be extracted.

You should also check to see what kind of financial help you can get. Two options are individual dental health insurance and discount dental plans.

With dental insurance, you’ll want to get some quotes from providers who cover dentists in your area. Typical plans require you to pay a premium and meet a deductible before benefits cover the rest of the cost. By getting some comparison quotes, and studying each plan, you can find the right insurance for your situation. Keep in mind that there may be a waiting period before benefits start.

You may also want to check with the college you are attending to see if they offer a special student dental insurance program.

An alternative to insurance, discount dental plans can be used within days of application approval. Discount dental plans do not pay the dentist directly. Instead, you become a member of the plan by paying an annual fee. Then, you visit a dentist who participates in the plan and has agreed to offer discounted fees for service. You pay the discounted fee to the dentist.

There are usually several different plans you can choose from, offering anywhere from 10 to 60 percent discounts on most dental procedures. At a discount dental plan comparison site, you can search for dentists in your area who participate in the various plans. This is really helpful if you are going away to school in another town or state.

Once you find a plan you like, it’s pretty simply to apply and pay online. As soon as you have your membership card, you’re ready to go get your dental work done.

Compare discount dental plans in your area.

Justin Scott is a free-lance writer. He recommends the comparison site to get free quotes on student dental insurance and dental discount plan comparisons.

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