Best Supplemental Dental Insurance

Contributor, Benzinga

Did you know most of our readers prefer DentalInsurance.com for their dental insurance needs?

If you already have health insurance but need more dental coverage, it’s time to look at a supplemental dental insurance plan. Here’s Benzinga’s guide to select the best additional coverage for you.

Best Supplemental Dental Insurance Providers

Once you know dental isn’t included in your health insurance plan, you might wonder if it’s even worth getting dental insurance on top of it. The right provider for your needs is always worth it, and we’ve done the research to share our top picks to help you narrow your search. 

1. Smart Health Dental

Smart Health Dental (SHD) offers multiple dental insurance and noninsurance plan options. It has an extensive national network of more than 200,000 licensed dental providers.

Choose between preventive and comprehensive coverage. The preventive PPO plan offers coverage for most routine procedures like cleanings, check-ups and x-rays.

There are no deductibles or waiting periods. Annual maximum coverage for preventive is $750.

The comprehensive coverage will get you coverage for major procedures, including bridges, implants and dentures. The maximum benefit starts at $750 and increases to $1,250 by year 3. Your also benefits increase from 80% to 100%.

Contact SHD for details and a complete quote. Service is available Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. EST. Call 866-260-2402.

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Smart Health Dental offers no waiting period dental coverage, a rare find with many types of insurance. It is a national dental insurance provider with a network of more than 200,000 dentists. It offers 2 insurance plans and a dental discount card, so you can choose what works best for your family. 

The basic plan doesn’t cover major procedures, but its other insurance plan covers a broader range of procedures. The dental discount card isn’t insurance, but it offers upfront discounts on dental procedures. 

One perk that Smart Health Dental offers is its care coordination. Call and a dedicated team member will help you find a dental provider, book appointments and find affordable options for services that aren’t covered by insurance. 

While Smart Health Dental offers plans with a range of benefits, you can’t purchase coverage online. To buy a policy, you must call Smart Health Dental and speak to a representative. 

Best For
  • Customer service by phone
  • Basic coverage
Pros
  • Care coordination
  • Insurance and discount card available
  • No waiting periods
Cons
  • No online signup
  • Customer service only weekdays during business hours

2. DentalPlans.com

DentalPlans.com offers a variety of plans to help you save up to 60% on your dentist visits.

Savings plans cover more than 100,000 dentists across the nation and start at $80 per year.

There’s no wait time for certain procedures, but it’s important to know that your out-of-pocket costs will still be higher than going with a PPO or HMO plan. 

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Saving money on dental expenses
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It can be time-consuming to find the best dental plan. You need to visit the websites of insurance companies, review the plans and determine which one fits into your budget while giving you the benefits you need. 

DentalPlans.com takes the stress out of finding a dental plan. It focuses on dental savings plans, also known as dental discount plans. 

These plans aren’t insurance, but they can still save you a significant amount of money on your dental costs. They also have some advantages over dental insurance. For example, while traditional insurance typically has waiting periods, dental savings plans do not. And you can typically use a dental savings plan for cosmetic procedures. 

DentalPlans.com has been in business for over 20 years and it has excellent reviews from its customers. You can choose among 30+ dental savings plans, and if you prefer dental insurance, DentalPlans.com offers that as well. Its customer service team is available to help you choose the best plan, and you can switch plans at any time. You can also buy a plan online. 

DentalPlans.com is best for people who need dental services immediately or who need extensive dental care. It has a wide range of plans and extensive customer service availability. The website can be challenging to navigate, though, and your options are limited if you prefer dental insurance. 

Learn more in this DentalPlans review. 

Best For
  • Those who need cosmetic dental services
  • Those who need dental care immediately
Pros
  • Wide variety of dental savings plans
  • Extensive customer service availability
Cons
  • Website can be difficult to navigate
  • Limited dental insurance options

3. United Healthcare

Dental plans from United Healthcare can supplement your health plans by providing you with several options. Supplemental generally covers:

  • Cleanings and fluoride with no waiting period and no deductible
  • Simple fillings and emergency care
  • Major services like retainers and root canals, subject to deductibles and waiting periods
  • No age restrictions
  • Visit retail and private dental offices

Check out our list of other affordable dental plan coverages for more options. 

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4. MetLife Dental

MetLife’s plans suit a variety of patients and provide better access to routine care and emergency services.

MetLife Dental offers a PPO plan boasting the Preferred Dentist Program, which allows you to save money on all services received from an in-network provider.

You can also get plans through its MetLife TakeAlong Dental plans for large or small businesses.

get started securely through Metlife’s website
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Save up to 45% on fees
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1 Minute Review

Choose from PPO, HMO/Managed Care and MetLife TakeAlong Dental plans with MetLife. MetLife offers a broad range of both providers and covered expenses as well as a handy mobile app. Get a quote today.

Best For
  • Flexibility to see any dentist
Pros
  • Extensive provider network
  • Cost savings
  • No network restrictions
Cons
  • Saving depend on several factors like cost of plan and frequency of use

5. Cigna

Cigna’s dental insurance plans are perfect for families with children because coverage includes braces, which can cost anywhere from $6,000 to $10,000 without coverage.

Cigna has a smaller network than other providers, but it’s worth it to find a participating dentist if your child needs braces. Cigna also covers 100% of preventive care. 

Disclosure: Not every plan is available in every area or to every customer.
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Affordable annual premiums
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The Cigna Dental Savings Plan is a more affordable alternative to traditional dental insurance. Like traditional health or dental insurance, you’ll pay a premium to keep your discount plan current. However, instead of paying a premium every month, you’ll pay off your entire annual premium when you sign up for coverage. When you need dental treatment, you can use your Cigna Dental Savings plan to receive a discount on services. Fees vary by region, but on average, dental plan holders save about 35% on their treatments. Using a dental plan in lieu of insurance also allows you to get the services you need without the hassle of filing a claim. 

While not a form of dental insurance, investing in a dental savings plan can help you control the costs of your oral care needs. Unlike many dental insurance options, the Cigna Dental Savings Plan can be used for cosmetic dentistry and orthodontics care so long as you choose a service provider that’s within Cigna’s network. Though a savings plan won’t cover any of the costs of your actual care, it can provide individuals and families with an option to lower their costs without breaking the bank. 

 

Best For
  • Anyone who doesn’t have dental insurance
  • Anyone looking to save money on dental care costs
  • Families looking for affordable dental assistance
Pros
  • Allows you to save an average of 35% on dental care costs
  • Includes a network of 88,000 dental professionals
  • Discounts can be used on cosmetic dental procedures
Cons
  • Does not cover any portion of your dental care costs
  • Not available in every state

What is Supplemental Dental Insurance? 

Supplemental dental insurance is meant to manage the costs of dental procedures not covered by your existing dental plan. Many dental insurance plans only pay up to $1,500. This is fine for cleanings or cavity fillings, so supplemental dental insurance is a great purchase when you know you may need more coverage. Some dental insurance plans also don’t cover preexisting conditions, so supplemental dental can help bridge the gap. 

Types of Dental Coverage

Like most other types of insurance, you’ll find a wide range of supplemental dental insurance. You need to understand the 4 main types as you begin your search. 

HMO

This is the least expensive option available. A dental HMO allows you to get dental care at a reduced cost from dentists within your plan’s network. If you choose a dentist outside the network, you’ll end up paying the full cost for care and procedures. 

PPO

This employer-provided dental insurance often comes with higher premiums than an HMO plan. Similar to an HMO, PPO has a preferred network of dentists, though it’s often bigger than an HMO network. You also won’t have to pay the full cost when you opt for an out-of-network provider, but you can expect the total to be higher if you go out of network. 

Dental Discount Plans

Dental discount plans aren’t exactly insurance, but by paying a low monthly fee, you’ll receive discounts on dental care. You’ll be given a dental discount card, which you can present to your dentist during visits. These plans ensure lower prices on a variety of services. 

Dental Indemnity Plans

You can use any dentist you want with a dental indemnity plan, which means there’s no network. Of course, this comes with higher premiums than you would have with HMOs or PPOs. It also has higher co-pays, which is the amount left over that you have to pay. 

Average Cost of Supplemental Dental Insurance 

Supplemental dental insurance plans are usually about $20 to $50 a month for individuals. Dental insurance plans for families range from $50 to $150 per month. Americans pay around $360 each year for dental insurance on average. 

How to Compare Supplemental Dental Insurance

Dental insurance can be frustrating due to annual coverage limits, which might only amount to $1,000 to $1,500. Some procedures are only covered up to 50%. As you compare coverage options, be sure to look at the following criteria before you make a decision.

Group Coverage

Group coverage programs like AARP and public programs like Medicaid are usually less expensive than purchasing individual insurance. They may also offer better benefits. 

In-Network Providers 

PPO and HMO plans limit you to the dentists within their network. If you already have a dentist you prefer, ask your dental provider which insurance plans it accepts. If you don’t mind finding a new dentist, a PPO or HMO is a safe option. 

Services Covered

Take a closer look at what possible dental insurance plans cover and when coverage begins. Some dental policies cover services such as gum cleanings and denture repairs immediately, but you may have to wait for a year or more for specialized services like dental implants. Also, take note of how much of each service is covered, since some dental insurance plans only cover 50% of major procedures.

Supplemental Dental Plans to Help You Smile

You can get specialized or emergency dental procedures without breaking the bank. Whether your health insurance excludes dental or you know you’ll need braces or dentures soon, supplemental dental insurance can provide coverage to help buffer the cost. 

To find the best supplemental dental insurance for you, start by comparing quotes. Just enter your ZIP code and some basic information, and we can show you the dental plans that make the most sense for you. 

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.

Dental Plans Promo

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!