Polls have found that a large portion of Americans is embarrassed by their smile. This can be due to missing teeth, discoloration, cracks, and other dental issues. There are many great dental procedures that are designed to improve the quality of your smile. Not only can cosmetic dentistry give you a better-looking smile, but it can also help you take important steps in protecting your teeth long-term. Unfortunately, many individuals put off these procedures because they are afraid of the costs. Most dental insurances provide coverage for general dentistry, but coverage for specific procedures varies.
What Does Your Dental Insurance Cover?
Every dental insurance plan is different. The best way to know what is covered is to contact your dental insurance provider or visit their website. Generally speaking, many dental insurance programs fully cover routine procedures and provide varying coverage for special procedures. Like most insurances, dental insurance rarely covers cosmetic procedures. Although within dentistry you need to consider how specific procedures are categorized. While teeth whitening is purely cosmetic and provides little to no dental health benefits, many cosmetic procedures are both cosmetic and restorative. A dental bridge for example can provide both an aesthetic benefit while also improving bite alignment. So while your insurance may not cover something like teeth whitening they may cover dental bridges or implants.
Restorative vs Cosmetic Dental Procedures
Many dental procedures fall into both the restorative and cosmetic categories. As mentioned above; implants, bridges, crowns, and similar procedures might help your teeth look better while also improving your overall health. In some cases, insurance only covers procedures that have direct medical benefits. It is important to discuss this with both your dentist and your insurance provider. Here are a few examples of covered procedures that have cosmetic benefits.
- If you need a diseased, injured, or broken tooth repaired with a dental crown or veneer, this could fit as a restorative procedure that is covered by insurance.
- Gum contouring may be medically necessary due to infection or gum disease.
- Orthodontic treatments including Invisalign braces may be necessary to fix bite alignment issues.
Other Payment Options To Consider
Because so many procedures fit in a Venn diagram between medically necessary and cosmetic, different insurances provide different coverage. Some procedures are only covered partially or not at all depending on your provider. If you are concerned about a lack of coverage, there are great financing options that can help you get the procedures you need at a payment plan that works for you.
Talk To Our Financial Team in Lewiston, Maine
At Joy Family Dentistry we want to remove as many obstacles as possible between you and a healthy mouth. We know many people don’t go to the dentist because they feel like it has been too long, they are afraid of getting bad news, or they are afraid of the costs. Our team wants to do everything they can to help remove those roadblocks and get you on track towards a better smile. If you have questions about costs for your dental visit, our financial team can help you plan a payment method that works best for you. For more information please contact our office.