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Save on Florida Dental Care

There are two ways people seek to make dental care more affordable:

  1. Traditional Dental Insurance
  2. Discount Dental Plans

Dental Insurance ADVANTAGE: normally, you can go to any dentist for covered services.

Dental Insurance DISADVANTAGES: (1) high cost, (2) long waiting periods for coverage on major services, (3) low annual limit on benefits, (4) deductibles, (5) claim paperwork, and (6) limits (called "maximum allowable charges") on reimbursements for most procedures.

In short, a dental insurance company must structure its insurance contract to be sure it pays out less money in benefits than it collects in total premium ... or the company soon goes out-of-business.

Discount Dental Plan DISADVANTAGE: you must use participating plan dentists for all benefits.

Discount Dental Plan ADVANTAGES: (1) low cost, (2) immediate savings, (3) no annual limit on savings, (4) no claim paperwork, and (5) savings on nearly all dental procedures, including cosmetic dentistry and orthodontics (braces).

It's easy to see why the dental plan marketplace is growing, while the number of people with traditional dental insurance has declined. Unless you are able to purchase group dental insurance through your workplace, then the economic realities of dental insurance make little sense for most people.

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Top-Rated Florida Dental Plan: Florida dental planCareington 500 Series

How To Shop For A Discount Dental Plan ... Step-By-Step

There are a growing number of discount dental plans available in Florida today. Here are some step-by-step suggestions to help you find the plan that's best for you.

Step 1: Your first and most important consideration is to be sure the dental plan has an adequate selection of participating plan dentists in your area. If not, then that plan is immediately eliminated from consideration.

The more participating dentists in your area, the better, because this allows you to be more discerning when selecting a dentist.

Step 2: Compare plan savings. This is done by comparing the dental plan “Discount Fee Schedules,” or what you as a plan member pay for dental services.

Only consider a plan that has a published schedule of fees that you can see and compare. This helps to eliminate guesswork, because you clearly see your savings before you buy. You should insist on a fee schedule that tells you – in writing – exactly what your cost will be on most dental procedures.

Beware! Some dental plans only give published discounts on 20 to 30 “most common” dental procedures, while promising “big" savings on more. But without exact prices in writing, you have no way of knowing what your true savings will be. Insist on seeing published fees on about 100 or more dental procedures.

Step 3: Compare the cost of dental plan membership. A good individual plan typically costs less than $100 per year. A family plan is typically about $200 per year or less.

Most discount dental plans require that you pay on an annual basis. However, one dental plan (Careington) allows you to pay on a more affordable monthly basis.

Step 4: Find out who can be included in your dental plan membership. Must they be part of your immediate family, or can you include anyone living in your household (regardless of relationship)?

Step 5: Think twice whenever you see the word “free.” Often, a discount plan will promote “free cleanings” or “free months” as enticements. Look closely. You will usually find that you are really paying for “freebies” with higher plan membership fees. So pay attention to the bottom-line cost.

Many plans include add-ons such as a Vision discount plan or Prescription discount card. These are fine and may contain value for you. But your greatest savings will be on dental care, so keep that as your focus.

Top-Rated Florida Dental Plan: Florida dental planCareington 500 Series

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