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What Is The Best Dental Insurance For Seniors

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There is a pattern among basic dental insurance. The cheapest, most basic plans may not offer coverage for major procedures like root canals, dentures, or implants. It’s also common to see waiting periods of six to 12 months, depending on the policy.

If you can’t afford a robust plan, you may consider charitable options. The American Dental Association runs the Dental Lifeline Network for vulnerable people. You may also explore local dental schools or Community Health Centers for more affordable services.

What If My Favorite Dentist Is Out Of Network

Dentists can choose to join insurance providers preferred networks so that patients get the most out of their insurance benefits. If your dentist isnt part of your new dental insurance providers network, you’ll end up paying more for dental care.

As with other types of insurance, dental insurance companies prefer you use an in-network dentist and will cover a larger share of the cost than if you visit an out-of-network dentist. As part of their agreement with the insurance company, in-network dentists dont charge patients more than the costs covered by the insurance plan.

Is There Specific Dental Insurance For Seniors

Some provinces make public dental insurance available to seniors. These programs can be limited in who they apply to, amounts reimbursed and care covered. Examples include the Ontario Seniors Dental Care Program and Albertas Dental and Optical Assistance for Seniors program. Both target low-income seniors and have income limites. Check with your province to see what is available.

Health care, and particularly dental care, for seniors, can be a significant expense. Private insurance can be critical for defraying the costs.

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Ppo Hmo Or Dental Discount Plan


Dental insurance companies use a variety of strategies to fine-tune coverage that meets your needs for care and your budget. Part of that strategy involves how the dental providers are structured.

  • A PPO, or preferred provider organization, is the most common type of dental insurance. This plan has arranged reduced rates with dentists. These dentists are called in-network because they will work with the insurance company. You can go out of network if you have a PPO plan, but you will not get the benefit of the reduced rates. Its best to check to see if your preferred dentist is in-network before you buy insurance.

  • An HMO, or health maintenance organization, is typically not a suitable dental insurance plan for seniors. While it is a very low-cost alternative, it covers little to nothing other than routine visits and cleanings.

  • A dental discount plan is a newer concept being rolled out by insurance companies. With this plan, you pay a minimal premium and choose from a select group of dentists who have agreed to a reduced payment schedule. You pay the dentist the reduced rate at the time of service.

How Dental Insurance Plans Work

The best dental insurance for seniors

The first thing to know about choosing a dental plan is how it works. Like health insurance, dental insurance plans charge you a monthly premium, and in return the insurance company helps you pay for needed care. There are other similarities, too:

  • Most dental plans have a network of providers
  • Theres a deductible an amount you pay out of pocket before the plan pays for treatment
  • You pay for a portion of many procedures via co-pays or co-insurance

Theres also a big difference: Compared to medical plans, dental coverage is focused on prevention. The most common dental treatments preventive checkups and cleanings are usually covered without any out-of-pocket charge. The upshot is that if you dont have any major issues, you could go for years without having any out-of-pocket dental expenses.

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Is Dental Insurance Worth The Cost


Dental insurance can be had for under $100 a month, paying out a maximum of $1,000 to $5,000 annually.

We used independent non-profit FAIR Health Consumer to get cost estimates of some dental procedures and came up with the following chart. Your costs may be higher or lower because costs vary across states and regions. Keep in mind that one dental procedure can include multiple fees, like X-ray and fillings for example.

Dental Procedure

Is Dental Insurance For Senior Citizens Worth It

You might be wondering why youd need to sign up for dental insurance if youre covered by Medicare. Well, the truth is that Medicare doesnt cover all of your dental care needs. While it might help with costs associated with a treatment for your overall health, such as a dental exam prior to undergoing a medical procedure, it wont cover trips to the dentist. This means youd need to pay for things like checkups, cleanings, fillings, dentures and implants completely out-of-pocket. All of that can take a serious toll on your budget!

What about Medicare Part C plans that you can purchase to supplement Part A and Part B? Well, you need to be extra cautious when shopping for those plans because they dont always cover dental care either. A better route might be to purchase a separate dental insurance plan designed to cover everything from preventive care to major services. That way, you can rest assured youll get the financial support you need to keep your teeth and gums healthy during your golden years. Shop dental insurance.

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How Dental Offices And Insurance Companies Handle Insurance Claims

If youre going to sign up for a PPO or an indemnity plan, its smart to learn how dental billing works for those plans. Although the information below is quite technical, it will help you fully understand your situation if in the future your plan refuses to pay the portion of a bill. This information is particularly important if you choose an indemnity plan or if you get a PPO but chose to use out-of-network providers. In both situations, balance billing, discussed below, might be an issue for you.

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Dental insurance options for seniors parallel many of the options available for other adults. However, overall costs and out-of-pocket costs can be a bigger consideration if you have a fixed income or are concerned about making retirement savings last.

  • A+ rated by the Better Business Bureau
  • Plans from multiple dental providers

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Why Should I Get Private Health And Dental Insurance In Canada

Getting private health insurance makes sense. It helps you to access and pay for great care when you need it.

Good private health plans in Canada include extensive coverage for dental care, as well as vision care, prescription drugs, ambulance services, hospital days, medical devices, specialists and more.

Which Dentist You Can Choose

Many dental plans for older adults are managed care plans, meaning the providers have agreed to offer their services at a reduced rate. Because not all providers will participate, that typically means networks are limited, and youll be choosing a plan based on a list of their participating providers.

When evaluating plans, its important to research which providers are included and select a plan that features either a dentist you know, and trust or is close by and easy to access. If you have a current dentist you like, check with them and see which insurance they accept, it could help influence your decision as youre weighing options.

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Dental Insurance Company Reviews

There are over 100 dental insurance companies or brokers selling policies to seniors. Knowing where to start with getting quotes can make you feel like your head is spinning. Fortunately, we narrowed down the best dental insurance companies by focusing on value to the consumer, industry reputation, levels of coverage and other criteria.

After our evaluation, we chose the best dental insurance and discount plan providers:, Spirit Dental, and 1Dental. Each of these companies stood out as dental insurance companies selling policies directly to seniors.

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The Risk: Losing Money or Breaking Even on Premiums

Its entirely possible and even common for a patient to put more money into a plan than the plan ends up paying out in benefits. To consider this possibility, its helpful to look at some hypothetical numbers. Suppose you purchase a plan that has $30 monthly premiums, a $50 deductible, and a $1,000 coverage limit. It covers 100% of preventative, 80% of basic services, and 50% of major services. For this plan, your yearly spending on premiums will be $360. Note that deductibles are not usually charged for preventative care.

Now imagine that the plan covers twice a year preventative visits that together are worth $300. If you only end up needing preventative care in a year, then you would essentially lose $60. If you only took advantage of one of the two cleanings available to you, you would essentially be paying $360 for about $150 of dental care, a loss of $210. If the preventive care were worth slightly more than $300 total, then its likely you would break even on the plan, meaning you could have paid out of pocket with less hassle.

The Potential Benefit: Saving Money With a Dental PPO

Cost Sharing for the Hypothetical Plan*

You Pay
  • $50 for your share of basic services
  • $500 for your share of major services
  • $300 for preventive services
  • $200 for its share of basic services
  • $500 for its share of major services
= $960 total costs to you= $1,000 total cost to insurance

Other Options: Alternative Plan Types to Consider

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What Is The Best Dental Insurance For Individuals

Most dental insurance companies offer plans for individuals, but obviously some are better than others. Based on our research the best dental insurance for individuals is offered by Delta Dental. It offers affordable dental plans for single people, and has an extensive network of dentists to pick from in over 330,000 locations nationwide.

You can choose from an HMO plan, with affordable copays on preventive, basic and major dental services, and best of all there are no waiting periods for many services. Theres a PPO plan on offer too, for all three tiers of care. It includes a deductible and there is an annual maximum on treatment, so youll have to cover any additional fees after you have reached that maximum within a year.

Do I Need Expat Health Insurance

The cost of doctors visits, medicines and medical tests can add up very quickly, especially if you are an expat living in another country and are not covered under the countrys health insurance plan. Being an expat brings along with it, its own set of challenges your health should not be one. This is where Health Insurance steps in, so that one can have access to the best healthcare without fearing the financial strain. Guaranteeing you and your loved ones, the peace of mind everyone deserves.

International Coverage: If you are an individual who travels frequently, an international policy can provide you with extensive health cover even when you are abroad. You may have travel insurance in place, but bear in mind these policies are designed only for short visits and to cover for emergencies.

Tailor Made: Individual private medical insurance policies are tailor made to fit the needs of expats, as they take into account factors such as how pre-existing conditions are handled and if there are any age restrictions.

All inclusive: Even if you are eligible for subsidized medical cover, most public healthcare policies are not all-inclusive which means there are gaps in the coverage and certain treatments might not be covered. An expat policy gives you thorough access to the finest healthcare amenities in the country.

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Why Buy Through Sbis

SBIS gives anyone who is losing or does not qualify for group benefits access to a supplementary Ontario Dental Insurance Plan from numerous top insurers in Canada. We also provide comprehensive coverage to business owners, entrepreneurs and anyone else wanting to minimize the financial risk of being underinsured.

As an independent broker, our mandate is to help you choose the right insurance carrier for your individual dental insurance coverage requirements. This means we will work with you to identify your specific needs, and then match you with the right carrier.

Are There Dental Insurance Plans Specific To Each Province

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Each province provides different levels of care as a part of its public insurance offering, meaning private options also differ. Private insurance plans are designed to fill in gaps around public coverage. Pricing, reimbursements, and types of dental procedures covered change accordingly. Dental care is not well-covered by public insurance plans.

Provinces have schedules of suggested fees for dental care. Procedures can vary significantly from one to another. 30 minutes of cleaning is $86 in Nova Scotia, $91 in British Columbia, $115 in Ontario and $116 in Quebec and $140.20 in Alberta! That is a significant difference. Insurances adjust their pricing and offerings for this reality.

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What Does Dental Insurance Cover

Most full coverage dental insurance plans cover two preventive maintenance visits a year without requiring a deductible payment. However, most require a deductible per person per year to cover dental care costs beyond preventive check-ups. If you need work done, most plans will cover a part of the costs.

A new dental plan wont cover an emergency youre experiencing now either, as most have a waiting period of six to 12 months for major work. However, some insurers will waive that if you recently had dental insurance.

The best dental insurance at a glance

  • Annual max benefit as low as $1,000
  • Waiting periods vary for major care

UnitedHealthcare Dental, underwritten by Golden Rule Insurance Company, is part of America’s largest network of dental providers. It also has a solid A+ financial rating from Standard & Poor. That’s because it’s part of the UnitedHealth Group, a Fortune 500 company.

There are no age limits on the various UnitedHealthcare Dental insurance plans, and preventive care is covered without any deductibles or frustrating waiting periods for basic through to common dental procedures. Coverage amounts and maximum benefits vary between plans and are also dependent on where you live.

Online browsing of plans is simple, and you can quickly get a hassle-free quote. As mentioned above, preventative care is covered, meaning exams, x-rays and cleaning won’t be a worry for the foreseeable.

Three Levels Of Coverage For Three Types Of Procedures

Dental PPO plans typically have a coverage formula that indicates what youll pay for different kinds of care. A 100/70/50 formula means that the insurance company covers preventive care checkups and cleanings at 100% basic procedures like fillings and extractions are 70% covered and major procedures like crowns, bridges, and root canals are covered at 50%. There are variations on this formula, and some procedures may be considered basic in one plan and major in another.

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Variety Of Options: Dentalplanscom is a nationwide online marketplace for dental discount plans offering alternatives to dental insurance since 1999. This means that they are not the actual insurance provider instead, they contract with over 30 trusted companies, including Aetna, Careington, and Cigna. isn’t accredited by the Better Business Bureau, but they have an A+ rating.

Plan coverage ultimately depends on the specific program you choose from this brokerage.

According to’s website, their providers’ policies offer 10% to 60% off the cost of dental work. These discount plans may be among the cheapest you will find. But if you’re looking for a specific procedure with a nearby practitioner, make sure they accept the plan you’re considering before signing up.

Since they offer plans from over 30 companies your quotes and premiums can vary a lot based upon your situation and the companies in your area. made our list because of the variety of options it offers to customers.

Can I Purchase Only Dental Insurance

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Insurers rarely offer stand-alone dental coverage. More often, they include it as a part of their private health insurance plans. You can get private insurance with dental care through many employers or by purchasing it on your own. These plans also help pay for prescription drugs, vision care, ambulance services, medical devices, specialists and more. We recommend private health insurance regardless of your province. Provincial public health care has significant gaps. Dental care is a significant one.

Private health and dental insurance is a cost-effective way to ensure you can pay for care.

Want to learn more about public and private health insurance in Canada? Our summary article has answers to all your questions.

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Best For Low Costs: Mutual Of Omaha


While Medicare Advantage plans from Mutual of Omaha arent available in every location, the prices and coverage are good. There is a $0 monthly premium option that covers all preventive dental care, with just a $25 copay, and a $28 monthly premium plan called CareAdvantage Plus, which covers comprehensive care at a $0 copay, up to $1,000 per year.

  • CareAdvantage plans offer lower or $0 copays on other products as well

  • Easy to compare CareAdvantage plans, with the differences clearly highlighted

  • Overall low cost for a decent amount of coverage

  • Care Advantage Plus covers hearing aids up to $750

  • Limited plan options overall

  • Plans not available in all states

  • Higher out-of-pocket maximums with both plan options

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