Dental Care

This is a pretty good article on the state of dental insurance, particularly as an employee benefit.  It talks about all of the things that I tell my people, including:

  1. Dental insurance does not work the same way as health insurance.  You are going to pay more out of pocket for treatment.
  2. Employers place a much lower priority on stellar dental coverage because they are worried about how to maintain the health insurance.
  3. This is particularly true regarding orthodontics.  At my office, the philosophy is that orthodontics are something you can plan for save money ahead of time.  We would rather spend the benefits dollars on the health insurance program.

Another thing I say all the time is that dentists are not beholden to the insurance companies the same way that doctors are.  If a doctor tells BCBS of Illinois where it can stick its “negotiated fees”, she might as well leave the state.  A dentist can get away with it.  So I will say again:

Dental insurance is not the same as health insurance.  But here was something that I didn’t know:

“Although dental insurance premiums have remained relatively steady over the last decade, especially when compared to skyrocketing medical-insurance premiums, between 1998 and 2008 the increase in the cost of dental services exceeded that of medical care and far exceeded the overall rate of inflation.” 

I wonder if that statistic will outlast the recession.

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