Dental procedures are expensive. Even a routine teeth cleaning can cost you up to a few hundred dollars without insurance. We put together our list of the best dental insurance Florida has to offer — don’t sign up for a dental plan without checking out our overview of affordable dental plans in the Sunshine State.
The Best Dental Insurance in Florida:
- Delta Dental: Best Overall in Florida
- Guardian: Cheapest in Florida
- Humana: Best for Combining Health & Vision
- Florida Blue Dental: Best for Discounts
- UnitedHealthcare: Best for Family Coverage
What is Dental Insurance?
Dental insurance provides coverage to help reduce the cost of dental bills. In exchange for a monthly premium (or fee), you’ll have access to discounted dental services.
The type of plan you choose and level of coverage determines your actual amount of dental benefits. Just like health insurance, you’ll often have to pay a deductible. A deductible is the cost of dental services you’re required to cover before your dental benefits kick in.
The biggest difference between dental and health insurance is the maximum benefit limits. You often only have to pay up to a certain amount out of pocket for health insurance. Once you reach this limit, your health insurance pays for any other medical costs you may have over the year.
Dental insurance works almost the opposite. Most dental plans provide a coverage limit. Once the insurance company pays for a certain dollar amount of dental treatments, you pay any additional treatments out of pocket.
Here’s an example:
Let’s say your dental insurance covers treatments up to $1,000. You have several procedures done that costs $1,200. Your dental insurance pays for up to $1,000 of covered procedures. You pay the remaining $200 out of pocket. Any additional treatments for the rest of the year would also be out-of-pocket expenses.
Average Cost of Dental Insurance in Florida
A dental insurance plan can range in price depending on a number of factors, including:
- Coverage limits
- Individual or family coverage
- Amount of deductible
- Covered services
Expect to pay between $20–$50 a month for an individual dental insurance plan in Florida, or $240–$600 a year. The only discount normally available for dental insurance is to combine dental coverage and vision coverage from the same provider.
Depending on your dental insurance plan, you might be able to get a predetermined discounted rate for certain services.
Types of Dental Coverage
You can choose between a wide range of coverage options, benefit maximums and premium costs for dental insurance. In addition to these options, you’ll also have to decide what type of dental coverage you want.
You’ll generally be able to pick from 3 common types of dental coverage in Florida:
- Dental preferred provider organization (PPO)
- Dental health maintenance organization (DHMO)
- Dental discount plans
Each type of insurance or plan has different benefits and drawbacks. Understand a few key dental insurance terms before you take a closer look at the types of dental coverage available.
Dental Insurance Terms to Know
- Coinsurance: The percentage amount that you pay for dental services. For example, let’s say your plan includes 80% coinsurance. This means the plan pays 80% for covered services and you pay the remaining 20%.
- Copayment: Similar to coinsurance, copayments (copays) are the amount you must pay for a service. Copays are usually fixed dollar amounts for services instead of a percentage.
- Deductible: This is the amount of money you must pay for dental services before your insurance covers costs. Let’s say you have a $50 deductible and you need to pay for a $100 service. You’ll need to cover the first $50. Let’s say you go back to the dentist for more services. You will have already met your deductible and won’t have to pay it again until the following year.
- Exclusions: Exclusions are any dental services not covered by your dental insurance plan.
- Dentist network: This is a network of dentists and dental offices that have agreed to a contract with a certain insurance provider. In-network dentists agree to provide care at discounted rates to patients of that insurance company.
- Waiting period: This is the amount of time you have to have an active insurance plan before you can use benefits. For example, many plans require you to wait 6 months before you can use your dental benefits.
Dental preferred provider organization plans offer a dentist network where you can receive discounted dental services from in-network dentists. You usually pay a deductible, coinsurance or copay and your insurance covers the remaining balance. Your benefits may be reduced if you choose to use a dentist out of the network.
Let’s say you have a PPO plan with a $50 copayment for a service with an in-network dentist. The same service has a $75 copay if you use an out-of-network dentist.
Most PPO dental plans also have a benefit maximum. Once you reach the maximum amount of insurance coverage each year, you’ll have to pay out-of-pocket for additional dental services.
- You can visit any dentist you want.
- You won’t have to choose a primary dentist and you don’t need a referral to see a specialist like an oral surgeon.
- You can incur deep savings by using an in-network dentist.
- In-network claims are automatically submitted to your insurance company.
- They’re pricier than other options.
- You’ll have to pay more for dental treatments if you go outside your dentist network.
- You’ll get an annual maximum benefit.
- There’s a longer waiting period than other plan types.
Dental Health Maintenance Organization
You’ll choose 1 network dentist when you start a DHMO plan, which is sometimes called a prepaid dental plan. This dentist is your primary provider. Each network dentist receives a monthly fee for each plan member.
This set monthly payment to dentists allows you to get common dental services for little to no cost. There are usually no benefit maximums or deductible for DHMO plans.
You may have to pay the full cost of services out of pocket if you choose a dentist other than your primary provider. You also usually need to obtain a referral from your primary provider before getting specialty dental work.
- You’ll get a set copay with no deductible or benefit maximum.
- These offer the lowest plan premiums.
- There are short waiting periods and some plans have no waiting period.
- You’re limited to which dentists you can visit.
- You may have to pay the full cost of treatment outside of the network.
Dental Discount Plans
Technically, dental discount plans are not insurance. They are actually discount plans for certain dental services. There is usually a dentist network. You are given a discount card to present at an in-network dentist.
This discount card gives you immediate savings on dental treatments. Savings may be a fixed dollar amount or percentage of regular service costs. You pay a monthly or annual fee to be on the discount plan.
For example, let’s say you pay $100 a year for a dental discount plan. Routine cleanings at an in-network dentist are $100 full price. Your discount plan gives you 20% off, so you only have to pay $80 for the service.
- There’s no waiting period.
- You don’t have a deductible, copayments or coinsurance — you get a predetermined discount on certain services.
- There’s no maximum benefit.
- You don’t have to complete claims paperwork.
- You won’t receive free preventive care, unlike many dental insurance plans.
- There are higher-cost services, like wisdom tooth extraction, which may only offer a small discount.
- You can’t combine vision and dental insurance for a discount.
What Does Dental Insurance Cover?
The services covered by your dental insurance plan will depend on the company and plan you choose. Coverage varies between plans and providers but most dental insurance plans offer a 100-80-50 coverage structure.
The number represents the percentage of service that is covered:
- 100: Covers 100% of preventive dental services like routine exams or yearly cleanings.
- 80: Covers 80% of routine dental work, including root canals or fillings.
- 50: Covers 50% of major dental procedures — including crowns or implants.
What Does Dental Insurance Not Cover?
Just like the services that are covered by dental insurance, the exclusions differ between plans. However, most dental insurance plans do not offer coverage for the following services:
- Cosmetic dentistry, such as teeth whitening
- Orthodontia, like braces
- Preexisting conditions
Best Dental Insurance Providers in Florida
There are a number of reliable insurance companies that provide dental insurance in Florida. We analyzed different dental insurance providers to take the guesswork out of your search. It’s important to do your own research so you find the best dental insurance for you.
1. Best Overall: Delta Dental
From plan choices to affordability, Delta Dental is a great all-around choice for dental insurance. As one of the largest dental insurance companies in the country, you’re not restricted to dentists in your immediate area.
Delta Dental also handles the entire claims process with in-network dentists, so you’ll only pay your portion of services.
Additionally, there are plenty of plan options for families and individuals alike. You shouldn’t have a problem finding an affordable dental plan through Delta Dental in Florida.
2. Cheapest Dental Insurance in Florida: Guardian
Guardian offers individual plans in Florida for under $10 per month. Guardian’s prices are hard to beat if you’re looking for basic dental coverage. This affordable dental insurance provider also offers a higher level of coverage with competitive pricing options for Florida residents.
Choose between PPO or DHMO dental plans.
3. Best for Combining Dental and Vision Insurance: Humana
Humana dental coverage ranks as one of the best in J.D. Power’s 2018 Dental Care Satisfaction Study. It’s “better than most” in all categories of the study.
This includes overall satisfaction, cost, customer service and coverage. You can save on dental insurance costs by combining your vision and dental insurance plans through Humana.
4. Best for Discounts on Other Dental Services: Florida Blue Dental
One of the major benefits of a Florida Blue Dental plan is the discounts you’ll receive on non-covered services. You’ll receive discount programs for orthodontia and cosmetic dental services when you sign up for a plan.
Let’s say you need braces or want to take advantage of teeth whitening. Florida Blue could be a good option. The plans also have low to no copays for most routine services.
5. Best for Family Coverage: UnitedHealthcare
UnitedHealthcare dental plans rank about average in the J.D. Power Dental Care Satisfaction Study. However, families of more than 3 don’t pay deductibles after the first 3.
The deductible is $50 per person for the first 3 members and could save you a lot of money if you have a larger family.
Get Dental Coverage in Florida
Find the dental insurance you need in Florida by weighing your coverage options. Choose from a DHMO for affordable coverage or look into a PPO network for flexible provider options. Get a quote and get covered with dental insurance in Florida today.
Frequently Asked Questions
1) Q: How does dental insurance work?
A dental insurance plan charges a premium in exchange for covered benefits. Unlike health insurance plans, dental insurance plans usually have a cap on benefits, which means your plan may stop providing coverage once you reach the annual cap, often between 1k and 3K. Like other types of healthcare insurance, dental insurance focuses coverage on essential services, like cleanings, fillings, etc. Many plans don’t cover braces or elective cosmetic procedures. Get the cheapest premium here.
2) Q: Is dental coverage part of health insurance?
Some health insurance plans bundle dental coverage as well but, in many cases, dental insurance is a separate plan. Healthcare plans that are ACA-compliant are required to offer dental coverage to children but there is no requirement that adults have dental insurance coverage. Choosing a separate dental insurance plan can be a cost-saving step and helps make dental health costs more predictable. Check out our best providers for the cheapest rate.
3) Q: What kinds of dental insurance are available?
Your choices for dental insurance plans are similar to health insurance choices. You can choose from a dental HMO, which helps to keep premium costs low by keeping services within controlled network. Dental PPOs give more freedom to choose your dentist and care but cost more than HMO plans. A third option is called a dental indemnity plan, which pays a fixed amount or percentage for covered services. Compare quotes from our top providers for the best price.
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