Dental care is often misunderstood as just brushing and flossing and the least value is given to regular dental visits that support good oral care. Paying for regular visits to the dentist is not a pocket-friendly deal, but if you have a proper dental insurance plan in California, then the cost of visiting a dentist will be minimized. Right from protecting young children from tooth decay to safeguarding adults from chronic dental conditions, dental plans in California will take care of all your oral needs. Californians shopping for dental insurance need to know that only health plans purchased through the Covered California Health Exchange come with pediatric dental benefits for children up to the age of 18 years, and some of the health plans offered through the exchange also provide pediatric dental insurance. Adults looking for dental insurance can either purchase a dental plan as a supplement to their health plan or as a stand-alone dental plan.
Different Types of Dental Plans in California
Californians shopping for dental insurance plans will find no dearth of dental plans in the state, as California offers different types of dental plans that provide coverage from basic dental care to major dental services at quite an affordable price. People can shop for a dental plan based on their dental care need and their budget and can save up to about 50% on most dental services. Some of the popular types of dental plans available in the state include:
Dental Health Maintenance Organization Plan (DHMO)
The DHMO plan in California is designed especially for people looking for affordable dental coverage, as this type of plan has the lowest monthly fee of $7.95, and offers great savings on the dental visits. Members can obtain preventive dental care services like cleanings, x-rays, and check-ups free of cost and tooth-filling services from $4 to $14. A DHMO plans offer a network of dentists from which members are required to choose a dentist as their primary dental care provider. If the members are ever required to visit a specialist then they will receive a discount of 30%.
Preferred Provider Organization Dental Plan (PPO)
This type of dental plan is designed for people who wish to have little flexibility in choosing a dentist. Members of the PPO dental plan have the freedom to choose any dentist, though their out-of-pocket expenses will be higher compared to if they visit an in-network dentist. Members who want to have extra savings for the received dental care then they pay a visit to a dentist from the large PPO network of dentist. This type of dental plan provides comprehensive coverage and also have high annual maximums. The benefits of PPO dental plans increase with time.
Managed-care Dental Plans
Managed care or fee-for-service dental plan is designed for people who prefer more flexibility with the choice of dentist and wish to have less paperwork. This type of plan also has a network of dental care providers who agreed to render dental care services at set pre-negotiated rates for every dental care. Members of this plan do not require to file a claim, as the claim to the insurance carrier is submitted by the dentist itself. With these plans, members have less paperwork to complete and less out-of-pocket expenses. Managed-care dental plans provide a broader range of dentist choices.
Discount or Referral Dental Plans
This a technically not a dental insurance plan but this type of plan is designed to offer a substantial discount on dental care to all the participating members from a group of dentists. This plan differs from a PPO or DHMO because it does not pay anything for the member’s dental care, but receive a discount from the participating dentists, who offer a discount on the received dental care services.
What Does Dental Insurance in California Cover?
California residents having dental insurance plans should carefully read their policy options to understand what is being covered under their plans when they can use their plan, and their out-of-pocket expenses if they need to visit a dentist more often than their plan allows. Most of the dental plans in California offers preventive dental care services like cleanings, fillings, etc. free of cost, and cover a portion of the basic and major dental services like crowns, molds, root canal, tooth extraction, along with orthodontics, periodontics, or teeth supporting structures, prosthodontics, such as bridges and dentures or false teeth. Most of the dental plans in California allow two visits to the dentist every year.
Dental Insurance Carriers of California and their Popular Dental Plans
Having dental insurance in California is vital, as it helps you save money on the required dental care. Right from basic dental procedures like cleanings, x-rays, crowns, and dentures to major dental care costs, having dental insurance in California makes a huge difference in your financial condition. By having dental insurance in California, you can make savings of up to 50% on most dental services. Some of the revered dental carriers functional in California and their popular plans include:
Delta Dental is the U.S. largest and highly experienced dental benefits carrier offering dental coverage and benefits to individuals of different age groups. Delta Dental for the past 50 years has worked to improve the oral health of people by emphasizing preventative dental care and making dental coverage affordable for individuals of all age groups. Dental plans offered by this carrier:
Delta Dental for Everyone Gold Plan
Members of this plan are free to choose any dentist and the plan maximum is $1000 per calendar year per person. The plan does not have a waiting period for preventive dental care services and has a six month waiting period for basic dental care services, and 12 months waiting period for major dental services. Plan’s benefit increases after the first and second year and member’s past dental history is not asked by the carrier.
Delta Dental Immediate Coverage Plan
There is no age limit to enroll in this plan, and the plan has an annual maximum of $3000 per person. The plan does not have any waiting period for preventive, basic, and major dental care services, and has 12 months waiting period for orthodontics. The benefits of the plan increase after the first and second year and people don’t have to reveal their prior dental history for enrolling in this plan. The routine and basic services are completely covered from the third year onward.
Guardian Direct offers individual and family dental plans in California that are designed to fit a variety of needs and budgets. While buying the Guardian Direct dental plan, you will gain access to a large dental network with competitive benefits at an affordable price. Some of the popular plans offered by this carrier include:
Guardian Direct Advantage Silver PPO Plan
This dental plan offered by Guardian Direct provides coverage for cleanings, x-rays, fillings, simple extractions, root canals, and crowns implants.
Guardian Direct Advantage Gold PPO Plan
This dental plan offers maximum benefits available and provides coverage for a wide array of dental services like cleanings, x-rays, fillings, simple extractions, root canals, crowns implants, and child braces.
Guardian Direct Managed DentalGuard DHMO Plan
This is the most affordable dental plan offered by this carrier that has no plan maximum and provides coverage for cleanings, x-rays, fillings, simple extractions, root canals, crowns implants, and child braces.
SmartSmile dental plans are the best option for you if you are looking for the cheapest dental insurance in California, as you can buy a dental plan for as low as $6.95 a month. The DHMO plan offered by this carrier beat every other dental plan offered by other carriers in terms of the overall price of the plan. The plan offers low copays, has no deductible, no waiting period, and even has no limit or annual maximum on benefits. Members of the SmartSmile dental plan need to choose a primary care dentist from a wide network of dentists to whom they can visit as often as necessary. Members are just required to pay a small office visit copay each time while visiting their dentist. This dental carrier adopts complete transparency in terms of price, and members of this plan can avail of teeth cleaning services for $15 twice a year, filling services for $44, a crown for $490, and a full set of the denture for $440. Members can visit a dentist as often as they require because the plan has no annual coverage maximums.
Residents of California who are looking to maintain their oral health through regular dental exams and cleanings can shop for Humana dental plans. The dental plan offered by this carrier include:
Humana Complete Dental Insurance
This PPO dental plan offered by Humana offers affordable preventive, basic, and major dental services like routine cleanings, regular exams, fillings, dentures, and extractions. Members of this plan have the option to choose from over 270,000 dentists included in the Humana dental PPO network. The plan has no deductible if members avail of preventive services from in-network providers, and there is a one-time deductible of $50 per person or $150 per family on visiting an out-of-network provider. The plan provides 100% coverage for preventive services, 80% coverage for basic dental services with in-network providers, and 50% coverage for major dental care. The plan has no waiting periods for preventive care.
Humana Dental Discount Plan
This plan is ideal for members who want to greatly save on their dental care, as with this plan they can save around 20-40% on several dental care services like cleanings, x-rays, root canals, crowns, dentures, implants, and some other dental services. The members can save a good amount on their dental care not only at general dentists but also with specialists like Endodontist, Orthodontist, Periodontists, Oral Surgeons, and other specialists. The members of this plan will be able to save all through the year, as the plan comes with no annual limits, the plan also doesn’t have any waiting period, and no pre-authorization is required before the treatment. All patients are accepted in this plan and the members are also free for unnecessary paperwork and forms.