If you have Medicare or are considering signing up for it, you may wonder whether dental coverage is included. You may be relieved that some plans provide dental care at a minimal cost. However, not all Medicare plans do provide full coverage. If you have questions about whether your plan includes the benefits you are looking for, you should look into it before choosing a plan.
You can check that your plan will cover dental care by checking several sites’ Medicare benefit coverage listings. This may include the official government website and others connected to the government or private companies that offer benefits and claim to have experience with their offerings. Here is everything you need to know about Medicare dental coverage.
1. The Types of Dental Services That Are Covered Under Medicare
Some plans will include only some dental care in their benefits. You will usually be asked to get a prescription from your dentist before you can get fluoride or sealants. Here is some dental services covered under Medicare:
I. Restorative Dentistry
This dental care includes dental restoration and treatment, such as filling cavities, extractions, and teeth cleanings. You will have to pay a deductible before you can use the benefits.
Your braces may be removed if you have this service covered by your plan. You will need to file a claim to get reimbursed by the insurance company. You should send copies of the claim with any payment made so that it can be processed more quicker. Some plans will cover some orthodontics, but not all of them.
III. Dental Cleanings and Examinations
You may get a dental check-up once a year to ensure you are healthy. To get more than one exam, you may need to pay out of pocket for them. Also, if you have a cleaning, you will need to pay separately for the exam and the cleaning.
2. Changes to the Coverage of Dental Services Under Medicare in 2023
From 2023 onwards, there will be changes to the amount of coverage provided through Medicare dental insurance. Here are some of the changes.
I. Dental Services Are Provided at Zero Percent
If you use a traditional Medicare plan, you may be pleased to learn that all dental services will have a zero percent coinsurance rate. You will not have to pay for any of the procedures. However, a yearly deductible will need to be met before you can use the coverage. It would help if you spoke with your provider about whether they offer a plan with a zero percent coinsurance rate.
II. Chronic Disease Management
If you have a chronic disease, you can use your plan to get free dental care to help treat it. The services will help you improve your overall health and prevent the symptoms and complications of your condition from worsening. Usually, this includes procedures that are less severe than major surgery.
III. Accidental Dental Care
Even if you already have an accident dental plan, some dental services will still be covered by Medicare unless you have a high deductible plan. You can get services for emergency care, such as for injuries or complications resulting from routine oral examinations. Some people opt not to carry an accident dental plan because they feel the coverage is unlimited under their Medicare plans.
IV. Medicare Advantage Plans
If you have a Medicare Advantage plan and get dental services through it, then the coverage will be based on the same rules as a traditional plan. To learn more about the changes in dental coverage through Medicare Advantage plans, you should speak with your provider about the benefits you have under your plan.
3. The Impact of Dental Coverage on Overall Health and Well-Being
Dental coverage is most likely to be provided through Medicare plans if you are at risk of having problems with your teeth. Also, even though you may be able to choose between high and low deductibles, a plan with dental benefits will likely have a higher deductible than one that does not. This means that savings from the lower deductible will be less than in cases where the plan does not cover a service. Here are some of the impacts it may have on your overall health and well-being.
I. Preventing Dental Problems Early On
If you do not have regular dental check-ups and treatment, you are more likely to develop a dental problem that you would have to pay for later in life. As people age, their teeth lose strength, and the gums become susceptible to oral infections. The best way to avoid these problems is to get regular checkups and treatment as soon as possible. This should include pre-screened exams by your dentist before someone with health issues or poor oral hygiene can receive coverage through Medicare.
II. Dental Problems May Lead to Degenerative Conditions
If you do not get regular dental treatments, you are more likely to develop problems. This means that if you do not take care of your teeth, you may need more frequent and expensive treatments in the future. For example, gum disease is a common problem among people who do not care for their teeth. If left untreated, it can lead to loss of bone density and even death. It is also a risk factor for other degenerative conditions, including heart disease and diabetes.
III. Dental Problems Will Increase the Out-Of-Pocket Costs for Other Health Care
If you have a dental problem, you will likely need to visit your doctor more frequently and spend more time in the emergency room. This is especially true if you have a chronic disease that can occur with untreated dental problems. The increased costs of medical care will impact your entire health picture and make it more difficult to afford other healthcare services. In other cases, it may make it difficult for people to seek treatment for their chronic diseases because they are worried about putting additional strain on their finances by getting treatment.
As you can see, the changes to Medicare benefits in the coming year will impact the plans you can choose from. However, it would help if you asked your provider about any additional coverage they have available under their plan. Also, be sure to compare your plan to similar ones and make sure they are comparable. This will ensure that all of your needs are met.