Some of you might like surprises, but not when it comes to your dental bill. Let’s try to stop that tingly sweat from appearing on your skin when you open a bill. Asking for a pretreatment estimate can help you plan and budget and encourage a discussion with your dentist. You can avoid any unwanted surprises, while keeping a smile on your face, and keeping that smile healthy.
A recent study showed that cost is a major barrier to dental care. Cost also causes people to delay receiving dental care. Preventive care is important when it comes to your oral health because it can avoid big problems later. When you’re visiting your dentist, or calling to make an appointment, ask your dentist to submit a pretreatment estimate to Delta Dental. It will help you find out if the procedures are covered, if you will exceed your maximum, and how best to plan for your payment portion. Then cost can stop being a barrier between you and your dental care.
How it works
A pretreatment estimate is free. It is sometimes called a predetermination or preauthorization. This estimate will give you an approximate cost for your dental treatment. It will also tell you what you’ll need to pay out-of-pocket.
When your dental provider puts in a request for a pretreatment estimate, they also submit a treatment plan and x-rays that are relevant. This helps the Delta Dental consultant make the determination. After the consultant’s review of your benefits and the information sent by your dental provider, Delta Dental will send a response to you and your dentist’s office. This estimate will include how much the treatment will cost according to your dental plan and how much you will be expected to pay.
This estimate is based on the dental plan you have, your eligibility, your current plan benefits and the amount remaining in your annual maximum. If your case is complex, a pretreatment estimate can take longer, so consider that and plan accordingly. On cases that are not complex, an estimate should be returned quickly.
Why pretreatment estimates are helpful
Pretreatment estimates can help you set a budget and plan for your dental procedures. The estimate can also encourage a conversation between you and your dental provider to discuss the treatment and the best way to proceed. This conversation can also help you learn more about the procedure, and if there are any alternate treatments and procedures based on your dental plan. For procedures such as crowns, wisdom tooth extractions, bridges, dentures and oral surgery, which are more costly, pretreatment estimates are especially useful.
Get your preventive visits in, take care of your smile and take away any surprises when it comes to your oral health and dental bill.