Use Dental Benefits Before They Expire: Your Total Guide for 2022

Dental insurance benefits expire at the end of each year, but you can use your remaining dental benefits before they lapse at the end of the year. You can use your remaining dental benefits to help cover the cost of cosmetic, preventative, and restorative treatments, including dental appointments, check-ups, teeth cleanings, teeth whitening, and many others. Instead of allowing your benefits to expire, now is the perfect time to ask Dr. Fabian Paluk and Dr. Amanda Echeverria about additional ways to improve the appearance and health of your smile.

Does Dental Insurance Expire Every Year?

Dental insurance is unique because your benefits will expire if you don’t use your dental benefits by the end of the year. For many patients, the end of the year coincides with holiday time off from work or school. Take advantage of your Thanksgiving and winter holiday free time by getting the most out of your soon-to-expire dental benefits. As long as you schedule your treatment before the benefits lapse, you can apply the credit from a flexible spending account (FSA) or healthcare savings account (HSA) to the copayment for your procedure.

How Do I Know If I Have Dental Insurance Benefits Left?

Most insurance providers provide an online portal for carriers to check the status of their remaining benefits. You can quickly determine the status of your remaining dental benefits by calling your insurance agency. Our team is happy to help navigate your insurance benefits status by contacting your insurance provider directly. Call our office for assistance determining if you have dental insurance benefits left for 2022.

How Can You Best Use Your Remaining Dental Insurance Benefits?

You don’t want to lose the funds in your dental account at the end of the year, so how should you use your remaining benefits? There is no one-size-fits-all answer because every patient’s case is different. Here is our recommendation:

Talk to Your Dentist

Many patients decide to use their benefits for preventative dental care. Schedule a check-in appointment with Dr. Paluk or Dr. Echeverria as soon as possible to discuss the best way to use your remaining dental insurance benefits. Dr. Paluk and Dr. Echeverria will help you determine the best treatments and timeline to use your benefits to their maximum advantage by year’s end.

Preventative Dental Care

Preventative dental care is an excellent way to use your dental benefits before they expire in 2023. Preventive care is cheap and effective at helping you keep your teeth and avoid expensive dental work down the road. Your insurance provider likely covers the entire cost of primary preventive care, which means you don’t have to pay anything out-of-pocket. Furthermore, preventative dental care reduces your risk of dental problems requiring costly restorative dental procedures.

Family Cleanings and Exams

The most basic form of preventative dental care is a teeth cleaning and dental exam at least once a year (but every 6-months is best). Our dental technician removes built-up plaque and tartar from your teeth during a teeth cleaning and exam. Teeth cleanings and exams are necessary for the whole family to keep your dental health in optimal condition.

Professional Teeth Cleaning to Prevent Gum Disease

If you have not been to the dentist in over a year, we recommend professional teeth cleaning to prevent gum disease. Nearly 80% of adults over 35 will experience gum disease to some degree. During deep teeth cleanings or root planing and scaling, we will remove the tartar, plaque, and bacteria beneath the gum line and the root canals under your teeth.

Dental Implant Teeth Replacement

Tooth loss occurs for many reasons, and one of the most common is neglecting to prevent the progression of gum disease and tooth decay. Dental implants are comprehensive tooth replacements for one or multiple missing teeth. The implant anchors the dental crown in your jawbone, just like a natural tooth. If Dr. Paluk or Dr. Echeverria recommends getting dental implants to replace missing teeth, you can apply your remaining dental benefits for 2022 to help convert the cost of treatment. Dr. Paluk and Dr. Echeverria will create a treatment timeline that maximizes the value of your remaining dental benefits before they are restored for 2023.

What Happens If You Leave Tooth Decay Untreated?

Preventative dental care is inexpensive, whereas replacing missing teeth is costly. If tooth decay goes untreated, it leads to tooth loss. When you lose a tooth, your jawbone begins to shrink in that spot. Eventually, your jawbone will shrink enough to destabilize neighboring healthy teeth, leading to further tooth loss. The sooner you seek dental treatment, the better your chance of retaining your jawbone mass, healthy dental alignment, and facial structure.

What Happens if You Don’t Replace Missing Teeth?

If you don’t replace missing teeth, you will lose your healthy teeth. Tooth loss, if left untreated, begets more tooth loss. Your smile will become misaligned, loose, and sensitive on losing more teeth. As more teeth become loose and rot, you will notice persistently bad breath. Call our office and schedule an appointment to determine the most effective way to use dental benefits before they expire.