Wednesday, June 15, 2022

Does Medicare Offer Dental Insurance

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Which Parts Of Medicare Cover Dental Care

Medicare Plans May Offer Dental – Vision – Hearing and Drug Prescription Coverage
Medicare plan
No, except for extremely limited situations when dental services require hospitalization

Medicare Part B

Yes, included in 94% of plans, but sometimes there’s an extra fee for dental coverage

Medicare Part D

Medicaid Yes, if you are eligible for dual enrollment in Medicare and Medicaid, you could have access to dental care. Coverage varies by state.

Does Medicare Cover Invisible Aligners

Invisible aligners like Smile Direct Club help straighten teeth but arent as noticeable as braces. Medicare wont cover invisible aligners. But, some insurance companies usually treat aligners the same as braces. If your dental insurance includes orthodontic work, it will typically cover aligners.

With that said, it may be hard to find insurance that includes adult orthodontic coverage. If you do, you can expect to pay a percentage of the cost. Another option is to buy into a dental discount program that offers a discount on aligners.

Nat Gen Hearing Coverage

Nat Gen hearing coverage will pay up to $125 on diagnostic services including hearing exams. It will also save you an average of 62% on hearing devices. Some additional perks include a year of free follow-up care, two years of free batteries, and a three-year warranty for loss, repairs, or damage to hearing devices.

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Compare Medicare Advantage Dental Plans

Using Medicares Find a Medicare Plan tool, you can log in without an account, choose a Medicare Advantage Plan, type in your ZIP code, and follow the simple instructions to get a list of the available plans. The Plan Details button helps you learn more about the coverage offered, such as preventative dental or comprehensive dental .

Does Medicaid Cover Dental Implants

Does Medicare Offer Dental and Vision Coverage?

Medicaid in some states does offer some dental coverage not provided by Original Medicare, but no Medicaid program explicitly covers dental implants. In the cases where Medicaid does provide some dental coverage, the help typically is for more affordable solutions like dentures.

Each state has its plan for administering Medicaid, a federal/state program founded alongside Medicare in 1965 that helps those facing a financial need and/or disability regardless of age. The Center for Health Care Strategies has compiled how each state addresses dental care with Medicaid beneficiaries.

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What Does Original Medicare Mean For Dental Care

The short answer is that Original Medicare doesnt cover most dental care, including cleanings and fillings. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, almost two-thirds of Medicare beneficiaries do not have dental coverage. Some dental services can be covered by Medicare Part A .

Medicare, for example, would cover the cost of a jaw reconstruction after an accident injury or tooth extractions required prior to radiation treatment. An oral exam would be covered before any procedure such as a kidney transplant, heart valve replacement or kidney transplant. However, you wont be covered for any treatment that results from the exam. If the exam was performed by a hospital dentist, Medicare Part A would cover it. Medicare Part B would cover you if you were examined by a doctor.

Part A would cover your hospital costs if you need emergency or complex treatment. However, the actual dental care would not be covered. Similarly, Medicare Supplement Insurance plans will not cover routine dental care.

Is It Less Expensive To Buy Dental Coverage On The Open Market

An estimated 18% of all Medicare enrollees have Medicare Advantage plans that offer dental coverage. Another 8% are enrolled in separate, private dental plans, while 65% do not have any form of dental coverage. Several companies offer individual policies to those age 65 and older who desire dental coverage. These include BlueCross BlueShield, Cigna, Delta Dental, and UnitedHealthcare.

Medical care is expensive, and dental care proves no exception. An estimated 19% of Medicare beneficiaries who required dental services spent more than $1,000 on their dental care in 2016.

Just as with Medicare Advantage plans, individual dental plans can vary in their coverage. We researched senior dental coverage through BlueCross BlueShield of North Carolina for a 70-year-old man. We were quoted a $23.86 monthly premium for a preventive plan that offered $0 copayments for preventive services . Their Core plan was $44.35 and offered coverage at a higher percentbut had a yearly max of $1,000 that the plan would pay.

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Why You Need A Dental Plan For Seniors

As you age, you may be at increased risk for certain dental conditions, according to the American Dental Association. Dental conditions associated with aging include dry mouth, dental caries and periodontitis, a serious gum infection. Physical and cognitive impairments may also make home oral health care difficult for seniors, exacerbating dental problems. You may wish to have a Medicare dental plan to avoid paying out-of-pocket for dental treatment.

What About Medicare Advantage

Medicare Dental Coverage

Medicare Advantage plans, sometimes referred to as Medicare Part C, may provide additional coverage that isnt available with Original Medicare Part A or Part B. This includes dental care. This could include routine X-rays, extractions, and teeth cleaning.

Medicare Advantage plans are offered by private insurance companies that have been approved by Medicare.

There are many types of Medicare Advantage plans. They offer different coverages and cost structures. Make sure that the Medicare Advantage plan you are considering provides dental coverage for a specific type of tooth.

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What You Need To Know About Full

Choosing the Medicare health plan that’s right for you can be a chore, and you may be tempted to quit after selecting your medical plan. But don’t forget your dental health!

Maintaining oral health can be more challenging for seniors and people with certain disabilities. This may be due to an inability to brush their teeth properly, as well as an increased use of medications. Plus, as we grow older, our teeth become less sensitive, so we may not notice a problem until it is too late. All of these factors make it even more important to protect your dental health as you age.

Individuals Under Age 21

EPSDT is Medicaid’s comprehensive child health program. The program’s focus is on prevention, early diagnosis, and treatment of medical conditions. EPSDT is a mandatory service required to be provided under a state’s Medicaid program.

Dental services must be provided at intervals that meet reasonable standards of dental practice, as determined by the state after consultation with recognized dental organizations involved in child health, and at such other intervals, as indicated by medical necessity, to determine the existence of a suspected illness or condition. Services must include at a minimum, relief of pain and infections, restoration of teeth and maintenance of dental health. Dental services may not be limited to emergency services for EPSDT recipients.

Oral screening may be part of a physical exam, but does not substitute for a dental examination performed by a dentist as a result of a direct referral to a dentist. A direct dental referral is required for every child in accordance with the periodicity schedule set by the state. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services does not further define what specific dental services must be provided, however, EPSDT requires that all services coverable under the Medicaid program must be provided to EPSDT recipients if determined to be medically necessary. Under the Medicaid program, the state determines medical necessity.

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How Do You Get Dental Coverage If Medicare Doesnt Include It

If youre on a Medicare plan thats working for you and doesnt offer dental coverage, there are other options you may consider:

  • Buy a separate or standalone dental plan from a private insurance company. There are many types of dental plans to choose from, usually with affordable monthly premiums. Basic dental plans may offer you coverage for preventive dental care with lower monthly premiums. Other plans may provide more dental coverage for a little higher premium. Standalone dental plans usually include deductibles, copays, and coinsurance.
  • Look for an affordable walk-in dental clinic in your area. Depending on where you live and what kind of dental services you need, you may be able to find affordable dental care even if it means paying out-of-pocket.
  • Check with your state department of health. They may have information on where you can get low-cost dental services.
  • Have a local dental school or university program nearby? You can contact them to see if they offer any free or low-cost dental clinics.
  • Before age 65, you can consider opening a Health Savings Account if you have a high deductible health plan. Once you enroll in Medicare you can no longer contribute to the fund, but you can certainly use what youve saved to help pay for covered expenses, including eligible dental care.

Best For Preventative Care: Cigna

Does Medicare Offer Dental and Vision Coverage?


Some of Cignas Medicare Advantage plans cover preventative dental care like cleanings and routine exams, and some cover comprehensive care as well, such as crowns and extractions. With most plans, preventive care has an $0 copay. Cignas Medicare Advantage plan has built-in dental coverage through Part C coverage.

  • Variety of plans to choose from that include dental

  • Comprehensive dental care maximums range from $1,000 to $2,000 yearly

  • Plans also include vision coverage for exams, eyewear or contact lenses, and more

  • Some monthly premium are $0

  • May not offer Medicare coverage in your state, but offers separate dental plans in all 50 states

  • Plans vary in other coverage, so be sure to compare medical, dental, and vision plans

When choosing a Cigna Medicare Advantage plan, weigh the dental care, medical coverage, and prescription drug coverage separately, and then decide which aspect of the Medicare Advantage plan is most important to you. Dont get caught without coverage in an area you may need.

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Medicare Advantage Dental Policies

One exception to the dental exclusions under Original Medicares parts A and B is Medicare Advantage. Commonly referred to as Part C, these types of policies are offered by private insurance companies and are intended to cover all of the same basic expenses participants receive under the Original Medicare plan.

Many Medicare Advantage plans do offer dental coverage, according to, though the exact benefits provided varies based on the plan chosen.

Additionally, these plans can be:

  • HMOs
  • PFFS Plans
  • SNP

The type of plan chosen depends on what benefits youd like to receive, the cost of the plan, and any coinsurance or copayments that would apply.

How To Save Money On Dental Care

With or without dental insurance, there are many ways to make dental care more affordable. Check out these strategies.

Get covered if you can. As mentioned above, employer-subsidized plans are the best way to get dental care covered for working adults. For seniors over 65, Medicare insurance doesnt cover dental services, but you can buy a private Medicare Advantage plan with a supplemental plan for dental coverage.

Some Medicare Advantage plans charge additional premiums for dental, averaging $284 a year in 2016, according to a report by the Kaiser Family Foundation. Seniors can also look for plans through groups like AARP.

States are required by the Affordable Care Act to provide dental benefits to children covered by Medicaid and the Childrens Health Insurance Program . Some states also provide a dental benefit to adults who have Medicaid.

If youre a veteran and have a service-connected disability, you may be eligible for free comprehensive dental care from the Department of Veterans Affairs. Other veterans can buy dental insurance at a reduced rate.

Create a dental emergency fund. Put aside money you might have used for premiums. If you can, save the money in a tax-advantaged account. With a flexible spending account, which is available only with workplace healthcare plans, you can put away money pretax to pay for medical expenses, including dental, that your insurer doesnt cover.

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Dental Coverage With Stand

Although Original Medicare does not provide comprehensive coverage, that does not mean seniors will be left without dental plan options. There are senior dental plans that can be purchased as stand-alone plans, meaning they are not connected to your other forms of medical insurance. These standalone senior dental plans can cost around $20 – $60 per month and can cover preventive, diagnostic, and restorative services and procedures.

At HealthMarkets, we can help you save on your dental bills by finding you dental insurance that covers regular dental care for Medicare beneficiaries. Shop online now to get quotes, compare plans, and even apply.

HealthMarkets FitScore can even take the guesswork out of choosing a plan by ranking each one based on how well it fits your needs.Our services are free, so visit us now to find the right dental coverage for you.


Best For Customer Service: Unitedhealthcare

Medicare dental insurance coverage


  • Plans offered in all 50 states

  • $0 premium plan includes dental coverage

  • Many ways to contact customer service representatives

  • Website layout made it difficult to compare plans side-by-side

From the moment we viewed its Medicare Advantage website, UnitedHealthcares focus on being consumer-friendly was obvious. Before we searched for a quote, it offered options to find a plan online, over the phone, or through scheduling an in-person meeting. The company offers a seven-days-a-week information line as well as around-the-clock virtual visits with a health care provider for plan subscribers.

For dental coverage, one feature we liked was the option to input our dentists name to ensure they accept UnitedHealthcare. This saved us from having to navigate away from the website to check. We did have some difficulty comparing the plans side-by-side, and the plan details button wouldnt open in a new window, so we had to frequently navigate back to the plan quotes.

We were offered a flew plan options for the ZIP code searched. Two of them were: a $0 premium HMO and a $33-premium HMO. Each offered up to $2,000 annually toward the cost of preventive and comprehensive dental services. We also liked the $0 copayments on all dental servicesyou simply use the plan until you have spent the $2,000 max. This included coverage for dentures, crowns, and anesthesia for dental procedures.

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Medicare Dental Coverage Under Medicare Advantage

If youd like to get more comprehensive dental coverage under Medicare, you might want to consider a Medicare Advantage plan, available under the Medicare Part C program. Offered through Medicare-contracted private insurance companies, these plans are required to offer at least the same coverage as Original Medicare in other words, a Medicare Advantage plan would cover dental care under the same situations as Original Medicare. In addition, many Medicare Advantage plans offer additional benefits such as routine dental or vision care, wellness programs, and prescription drug coverage.

While Medicare dental benefits may vary by plan, some of the services you may be covered under a Medicare Advantage plan may include routine dental exams, cleanings, X-rays, fillings, crowns, root canals, and more. Some Medicare Advantage plans may require you to use dentists in provider networks when receiving care, or you may have the option to use non-network dentists but at a higher cost-sharing level you can check with the specific plan youre considering for more details.

Keep in mind that there may be certain costs related to your dental coverage, including deductibles, copayments, and or/coinsurance. In addition, youll need to keep paying your Part B premium if you enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan, along with any monthly premium required for your plan.

Services Excluded Under Part B

The following two categories of services are excluded from coverage:

A primary service provided for the care, treatment, removal, or replacement of teeth or structures directly supporting teeth, e.g., preparation of the mouth for dentures, removal of diseased teeth in an infected jaw.

A secondary service that is related to the teeth or structures directly supporting the teeth unless it is incident to and an integral part of a covered primary service that is necessary to treat a non-dental condition and it is performed at the same time as the covered primary service and by the same physician/dentist. In those cases in which these requirements are met and the secondary services are covered, Medicare does not make payment for the cost of dental appliances, such as dentures, even though the covered service resulted in the need for the teeth to be replaced, the cost of preparing the mouth for dentures, or the cost of directly repairing teeth or structures directly supporting teeth .

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Most Comprehensive Coverage: Aarp

AARPs Medicare Advantage plans, for the most part, all come with preventative dental coverage, and many of those plans also come with comprehensive dental care coverage as well.

  • Preventative dental care comes with most plans, to cover cleanings, x-rays, etc.

  • Many plans also come with comprehensive dental care

  • Generally low premiums

  • Some plans have a $500 maximum yearly limit for comprehensive dental care

  • Some plans give yearly maximum coverage amount for preventative and comprehensive dental combined

Its nice to feel secure with your insurance. Thats what AARP providesno matter what plan you choose, your pearly whites are covered. Most plans come with at least preventative dental care covered, and most also include comprehensive care covered, though at a yearly maximum cap. That means you may not need to pay anything at the dentist, depending on the procedure youre having done. However, if you think youll be having more intensive work done that would exceed the annual maximum, it may be best to look into plans that have more detailed, broader coverage options available. The PPO Plan A offers the most comprehensive coverage with a $40 deductible and $1,500 in annual coverage. The PPO Plan B offers a lower monthly premium but a $90 deductible and $1,000 in annual coverage.

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