Dental insurance is similar to health insurance, and most large companies offer comprehensive dental insurance as a regular employee benefit. Group insurance premiums vary from agency to agency and from state to state. For the most part, the premiums are based on the type of insurance you opt for.
As with health insurance, there are different types of dental coverage. A dental HMO has the least expensive out of pocket monthly premiums, but it also limits the dentists you can see and can require that your general dentist requests more expensive procedures before they will be covered by insurance. Aside from the lower cost, HMO dental insurance can help keep you from developing more serious problems because it is focused more toward preventive care, such as regular visits and oral maintenance.
A dental PPO sets its group insurance premiums through a network of providers. It is a little more expensive than an HMO, but you have more freedom to choose the dentist you prefer. If you would rather visit a dentist who is not a member of the PPO network, you will probably be expected to pay the initial bill yourself and then be reimbursed by the PPO later.
Dental insurance can seem very inexpensive compared to the high cost of health insurance premiums. When you shop around for the right type of dental insurance, be careful to note what you will be expected to pay for up front. Premiums can sometimes be very low because certain services or products are not covered by the insurance.
Group dental insurance premiums are generally lower than individual premiums. Individuals can buy into group dental coverage through several agencies, including credit unions or other professional associations. Your dentist can probably help you find a reliable local organization that offers group dental coverage for individuals.
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