Although dental insurance is extremely beneficial for you and your family, it can also be very confusing sometimes. This post should help clear up some of the more common questions related to dental insurance and what it covers.
What is covered under my dental insurance policy?
You may find yourself asking that question, and in turn, asking us. I can assure you that the staff at Deer Valley Dental Care in Calgary is always ready to answer your questions about insurance! We get a lot of these types of questions per day, so it doesn't come as much of a surprise that some people are a little confused about what is covered and what isn't covered when it comes to insurance benefits. Between the complicated words such as scaling, basic, elective, endodontic, and about four other different names for each exam - how is someone, who is not in the dental industry, supposed to know?
The most effective way for us to help you understand your insurance coverage is to bring a paper copy of what your insurance covers so we can break it down and explain it to you better. Sometimes, you may not realize that you could be coming in more frequently for hygiene re-care, or to replace those old fillings.
What is scaling?
"Scaling" is the actual act of scraping tartar/build up off the tooth, which is one of the most important parts in keeping the gums healthy. Essentially, this is your cleaning. Scaling is measured in units of time, and not restricted to a certain number of times per year.
A unit of time is 15 minutes, but it is important to remember that every patient is different. Therefore, someone who has 6 units of scaling in a year could maybe use 3 units per visit and only come in twice a year, whereas another patient who uses only 2 units per visit could come in 3 times a year (although each insurance plan differs from patient to patient.) is different)
Usually, it is the polish, fluoride or recall exam that is limited to specific times per year, such as every 6 months, 9 months, 12 months.
This is just one example and a very common misunderstanding that occurs between patients and their insurance companies. I encourage all my patients to learn more about the insurance they have and ensure that it is assisting them in achieving optimal oral and overall health.
Written by: Brieanna Duffy, RDH