Waiting periods for dental insurance refer to the time between purchasing a plan and when you can actually take advantage of certain benefits. While many of us would just assume all benefits would be available immediately, waiting periods are used by dental insurance companies to protect themselves from individuals who only buy coverage because they are faced with an expensive dental procedure.
Even if the company does have a waiting period, however, most will immediately cover diagnostic and preventive procedures. Basic procedures include extractions, periodontal treatment, root canal (sometimes), and fillings. Some plans also offer no waiting periods for these treatments as well. The amount of reimbursement for basic procedures is also lower compared to diagnostic and preventive treatments. For major procedures, such as crowns, bridge, inlays, dentures, oral surgery, and implants, most services require waiting periods, and coverage percentages for major services are also significantly lower compared to preventive and basic treatments. Some companies, however, don't require a waiting period at all and provide coverage automatically, even for more major interventions.
1. eHealth - eHealth is the first provider of health insurance policies over the internet, including dental plans. The website lets people compare between different provider's policies, some of which don't require a waiting period at all, and others which only do so for expensive procedures. They also provide a comparison tool, online application and plan selection advisor, 24-hour approval, and customer support with licensed agents. eHealth dental plans are priced competitively, and can start as low as $10.29 a month. Their wide network of dental insurance providers mean that you'll have a broad range of plans, that can be fully tailored to your specific needs. eHealth can also save you both money and time, by helping keep you well-informed.
2. Delta Dental - Delta Dental is one of the largest dental health insurance providers in the country. They provide access to over 145,000 dentists at more than 292,000 office locations, with some of the most comprehensive discounts in the industry, averaging 20.3% on all claims. Diagnostic, preventive and basic services are all available from the first day of coverage. Though some services may have a waiting period, if you've had preventive care within the past 60 days, these may be waived with proof of prior coverage. Of course, each plan has different requirements, so it's best to review the fine print carefully if a waiting period is a non-starter. In some states, Delta Dental plans have no waiting periods, ever.
3. :DentalPlans - :DentalPlans is a bit different than other dental plan providers, as they focus on dental savings. For an annual fee, they provide access to their network of dental providers, obtaining discounted plans for providers in your area, in a fashion similar to a warehouse savings company. :DentalPlans' search feature allows you to simply enter your zip code and search for plans or dentists based on pre-selected parameters. The plans all get activated automatically, without any waiting period, no matter the treatment. There are also zero health restrictions, no annual limits or paperwork hassles, and can even save your money for purely cosmetic procedures. Their 100,000-strong network of dentists spans the country, making quality dental care affordable and accessible.
4. Humana - Humana is one of the largest providers of dental insurance in the United States. They offer four types of different dental plans with various levels of coverage, effectively tailoring their policies to your budget and needs. The plans generally vary by state, in some of which there is no required waiting period regardless of the procedure, whereas others do have a six-month wait for fillings and basic oral surgeries. Across the U.S., however, the Humana Dental Loyalty Plus Plan has no waiting period, ever. This plan has low coverage amounts and percentages during the first year, and these gradually reach reach their maximum by year three, as a reward for loyalty. This plan also has a one-time deductible per person or family. Once it's met, you never have to pay for another one, as long as you stick with the plan. The longer you stay, the greater the savings.