Finding and paying for dental care
Word of mouth is by far the most common way to make a great dentist connection. Friends, family, and co-workers generally won’t steer you wrong.
Or ask your physician.
If you have dental coverage, visit the company’s website to find a dentist in your area. If you are enrolled in Delta Dental of Washington, you can find a dentist in your network at www.deltadentalwa.com.
If you are insured by Medicaid (also known as Apple Health), you have dental coverage!
For help finding low-cost care in your region, visit DentistLink.org to find a community dental clinic near you. This is a great way to bring down costs. Once you find one near you, be sure to call and check if you qualify for services and coverage before scheduling an appointment.
Google is also full of resources and reviews. Just add your ZIP code, if applicable, to your keyword search.
PAYING FOR DENTAL CARE
The single best way to save money on dental care is to go get a checkup today. Each cavity you prevent – through annual oral health checkups, flossing, brushing, and reducing the time food spends on your teeth, can save you nearly $2,000 in treatment throughout your lifetime*!
Ask your employer about dental coverage. If they offer it, sign up. If they don’t, talk to them about how critical oral health is to overall health, and encourage them to include it in your benefits package.
Ask if your dental office offers payment plans. Discuss this with the receptionist before you make your appointment. Also, talk with your dentist about treatment options at lower cost.
Create a tooth fund. Stash a little each month in a special account to pay for checkups and unexpected dental problems. This is especially important for aging baby boomers who don’t receive dental coverage through basic Medicare. The most cost-effective way to maintain good oral health is through flossing, brushing, smarter snacking, and regular checkups.
Ask about missed appointments and other fees. Most dentists charge for missed appointments. If you know the office policy beforehand, you can be sure to change or cancel an appointment without paying a penalty. By the way, if you have a fever, strep throat, can’t breathe well or are too uncomfortable to sit in the chair, it’s a good idea to reschedule.
*“Estimating Lifetime Costs of a Cavity”, Dental Data Analysis Center, Delta Dental, 2004.