Contributor, Benzinga
October 20, 2021

Want to jump straight to the answer? Many readers find their dental savings plan on DentalPlans.com.

If you don’t have dental insurance, dental savings plans are built to make dental treatments more affordable without paying expensive monthly premiums. Dental discount plans are not a form of dental insurance, but they provide you with benefits to limit your care costs. Read on to learn a little more about what dental discount plans include, how they differ from dental insurance and which option might be right for your family.

What Is a Dental Savings Plan?

Also known as a dental discount plan, a dental savings plan is an affordable alternative to dental insurance that offers you discounted dental services. After enrolling in a dental savings plan and paying an annual or monthly premium, you’ll receive a card from your benefit provider. When you show your benefit card at a participating dental professional’s office, you’ll receive discounted services. 

Key Points About Dental Savings Plans

  • A dental savings plan helps you cover the cost of dental procedures by offering you a discount when you use in-network providers.
  • Dental discount plans are not the same thing as insurance, and a discount plan will not cover any of the costs of your routine dental care.
  • Dental discount plans are more affordable than insurance and come with no claims forms.

Best Dental Savings Plans

How Do Dental Savings Plans Work?

Discount dental plans provide you with more affordable dental services by taking advantage of a provider’s network. When you enroll in a discount plan, you’ll pay a membership fee similar to the premiums you’d pay for dental insurance. You can choose an individual or family benefit plan.

After enrolling, your provider will send you a discount card, which you’ll present to your dental professional after receiving service. So long as the dental provider is within your discount plan’s network, you’ll receive a set percentage off your treatments. In most cases, this discount will vary from 10% to 50% depending on the office and service provided. 

Dental Savings Plans Versus Insurance

While a dental discount plan will provide you with more affordable services, it will not cover any percentage of your dental care bill. Dental insurance reimburses your dentist for services provided, less a deductible or coinsurance that you pay when you receive services. This can make dental insurance a better option for you’re looking for comprehensive coverage and assistance covering your bills.  

Even the best dental insurance won’t provide you with coverage for cosmetic treatments. However, select dental discount plans allow you to use your discount on cosmetic services so long as you stay within your network. Additionally, most dental discount plans also don’t require deductibles or coinsurance payments, offering you a simpler way to save. Finally, dental discount plan membership fees are significantly more affordable than insurance coverage, which can be ideal for families looking for cost controls on a budget. 

Want to compare dental insurance against dental discount plans? Check out some of our favorite providers below -- many offer both options.

  • UnitedHealthcare Dental
    Best For
    Large suite of products
    Overall Rating
    securely through UnitedHealthcare Dental's website
  • Delta Dental Insurance
    More Details
    Best For
    Cleaning + exams
    Overall Rating
    Read Review
  • Ameritas Dental Insurance
    More Details
    Best For
    Adult and child orthodontia benefits
    Overall Rating
    securely through Ameritas Dental Insurance's website
    More Details
  • Careington Dental
    More Details
    Best For
    No annual maximums
    Overall Rating
    Read Review
    securely through Careington Dental's website
    More Details
  • Guardian Dental Insurance
    More Details
    Best For
    Young adults and families with children and teens
    Overall Rating
    Read Review
    securely through Guardian Dental Insurance's website
    More Details
  • Renaissance Dental Insurance
    Best For
    Optional out of network care
    Overall Rating
    securely through Renaissance Dental Insurance's website

Compare Dental Savings Plans

Now that you understand how dental savings plans work, take a look at a few of the options you have for dental savings and who they’re best for. 

DentalPlans.com
Best For
  • Saving money on dental expenses
securely through DentalPlans.com's website

Best Overall: DentalPlans.com

When it comes to finding the best dental savings plan for your needs, one of the most important steps to take is receiving multiple quotes from competing service providers in your area. Each dental savings plan comes with its own cost and includes a unique set of benefits. This means that comparing multiple plan choices can help ensure that you’re getting the best possible coverage for your needs.

DentalPlans.com is a comprehensive dental savings plan marketplace that allows you to instantly begin comparing dental insurance and savings plan options available in your area. Simply enter your ZIP code and begin comparing available plans by cost, benefits, plan type and savings. If you don’t have time to individually request a quote from multiple dental savings plan providers, DentalPlans.com can make your search easier.  

Pros: 

  • Instantly allows you to begin comparing dental savings plan costs
  • Allows you to filter by company, benefits, plan type and additional features

Con: 

  • Does not provide dental savings plans itself 

AM Best rating: N/A

Best Dental Savings Plan for Seniors: Dental Care Advantage

Many older men and women decide to add a dental savings plan to complement their Medicare coverage. However, if you’re a senior living on a limited income, you might find the lack of affordable plans for seniors to be frustrating, as many companies charge higher premiums for older adults.

Dental Care Advantage makes it easy to explore low-cost discount plans for seniors available near you. Simply enter your ZIP code and begin exploring dental offices in your area that offer affordable plans for seniors. Dental savings plans for older men and women begin at just $5 a month, which will fit effortlessly into anyone’s household budget. In addition, many of Dental Care Advantage’s discount plans also include prescription drug, chiropractic and hearing program benefits, which can further supplement gaps in Original Medicare coverage. 

Pros: 

  • Plans for seniors begin at less than $5 a month in many areas. 
  • Many plans also include additional benefits such as hearing and chiropractic discounts.

Con:

  • Benefits can only be used at specific service providers you choose when you enroll in a plan.

AM Best rating: N/A

Cigna Dental
Best For
  • Affordable annual premiums

Best for No Waiting Periods: Cigna Dental Savings Plan

If you need care quickly, it’s better to choose a dental savings plan that offers coverage with no waiting period. When you sign onto a plan with a waiting period, you cannot use your plan’s benefits until the waiting period closes.

Cigna’s Dental Savings Plan offers quick coverage and allows you to begin using your benefits as soon as you’re enrolled. The plan has no waiting period, which can make it an ideal choice for anyone who currently needs dental treatments and who’s looking for a way to limit care costs. Cigna’s network of dental professionals also includes more than 88,000 service providers, which means that you’re sure to find care near you.  

Pros: 

  • Low-cost premiums for individuals and families 
  • Comprehensive customer care options available 

Con: 

  • Discounts not standardized in all areas

AM Best rating: A

Aetna Dental Savings Plan
Best For
  • Month-to-month membership
securely through Aetna Dental Savings Plan's website

Best for Wide Coverage: Aetna Dental Savings Plan

A dental discount plan isn’t useful if you can’t find a service provider near you who accepts your plan. If you live in an area where there are fewer dental service providers, you might want to consider choosing Aetna for your coverage. Aetna’s network includes more than 131,000 dental service providers in 50 states, meaning that coverage spans the entire country.

In addition to dental discounts, Aetna also offers extra discounts on a variety of health service programs ranging from weight-loss programs to prescription drug coverage. These savings range between 10% and 40% of the cost of generic prescription drugs, though this percentage will vary depending on your location and the medication you need. More than 87,000 pharmacies recognize Aetna’s discount plan, including Rite Aid Corp. (NYSE: RAD) and CVS Health Corp. (NYSE:CVS) locations across the country.   

Pros: 

  • It’s available in all 50 states.
  • Affordable membership fees begin at $75 annually for an individual.

Con: 

  • A $15 one-time enrollment fee is charged to new enrollees. 

AM Best rating: A

Careington Dental Savings Plan
Best For
  • No annual maximums

Best for Telemedicine: Careington Dental Savings Plan

Not every dental pain or issue requires a visit to the dentist. However, you may not be sure whether you need to visit a dental service provider without speaking with a professional. In these instances, telemedicine can provide you with an affordable way to speak with a dental professional before booking an expensive visit.

Careington Dental Savings Plans is one of the only dental savings plan providers we’ve seen to offer free, unlimited telemedicine. You can connect with a fully accredited doctor 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with the company’s 500 Plus Series. There are also no consultation fees or limitations on the number of visits you can use with your benefits. 

Pros: 

  • Unlimited telemedicine included with the 500 Plus Series
  • 20% to 50% savings on dental care services

Con: 

  • More expensive than most competing dental discount plans

AM Best rating: N/A

Exploring Dental Discount Plans Near You

Though it’s easy to find a dental discount plan that offers benefits with no waiting period, it’s always better to sign onto a plan before you need to use it. Knowing that you have benefits can give you the peace of mind that comes with knowing that a dental emergency or treatment won’t break the bank. Begin by exploring a few recommended providers above, or compare dental insurance options and get your quotes to learn more about savings options. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Questions & Answers

Q
Q. Are dental savings plans legit?
A

Yes. Reputable dental savings plans can help you save money on your dental care needs by offering you discounted services when you stay within the company’s network. Individual savings rates will vary by service and location.

Q
Q. Can you have dental insurance and a dental savings plan?
A

It is up to your dentist and your dental discount plan provider to determine whether you can use your dental insurance and your discount plan on a single procedure. In most cases, you will not be able to combine your benefits, but you should review the terms of your plan or policy to learn more about whether you can use multiple benefits on the same procedure.

Dental Insurance Methodology

To determine the best dental insurance providers, we pored through all United States carriers. We winnowed the list by only including companies that have a wide coverage area and product offering. To further break down the list to the true best dental insurance providers, we gave weight to carriers that offer discounts, are available in all states and have multiple payment plan options.

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Get 10% off any dental savings plan at DentalPlans.com. You can reduce your dental care costs by saving 10-60% off at the dentist!