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When you have dental insurance, you have access to benefits that keep your teeth healthy and always looking their best. There’s a lot you have to consider if you’re looking for a new plan right now, and you can’t just compare plans by their prices alone. Before you decide on purchasing one plan or the other, it’s worth it to actually learn how to choose the one that’s right for you!

Dental HMO vs. Dental PPO

Just like other kinds of healthcare plans, dental insurance plans can be organized as HMOs or PPOs. While there are plenty of differences between these two types of plans, a primary consideration for some might be whether or not they’ll be able to keep their current dentist.

As with healthcare, a dental HMO requires the patient to choose a primary dentist. This is the person the patient sees first for all dental care. If a specialist is required, this dentist is the one who makes the recommendation to someone in the plan’s network.

Dental PPO plans, on the other hand, don’t require a primary dentist – although you’ll probably end up treating one like they are. That said, you won’t need this dentist’s referral to see specialists, although you could end up paying a lot more by seeing someone outside of your plan’s network.

Covered Services & Benefit Caps

Not all dental insurance policies are built the same. That should go without saying, but sometimes people purchase a plan without really looking into what it covers and considering their needs. Very rarely do dental insurance plans cover everything all the time, so inevitably there will be out-of-pocket expenses and copays you’ll have to afford.

Most plans will have an annual deductible. This is the amount of money you’ll have to pay on your own before your plan begins to cover costs. If you don’t think you’ll need extensive or expensive dental care, then a high deductible with lower monthly costs might work for you. If you think you’ll need a lot of work done, then perhaps a low deductible with higher monthly premiums is preferable for your situation.

It’s important to note here that preventative care (X-rays, cleanings, sealants, and routine exams) are often covered by most insurance at around 80-100 percent. More complicated procedures and services are covered somewhere around 50 percent. If a plan you’re considering varies dramatically from these, it’s worth considering whether or not it’s really right for you.


There are a lot of variables to consider when you’re shopping for dental insurance, but don’t let yourself get caught in the weeds. Knowing how a plan is organized and what it offers may be all the guidance you need to choose the one that’s right for you.

If you want an expert to walk you through your options, get in touch with Insurance Specialists, Inc. We’ll help you understand the products we have available and how they may meet you and your family’s needs.

Contact us online or call (888) 451-0883 today to learn more.