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How Do Managed Care Dental Plans Work?

How do you get access to comprehensive dental care and save money? By enrolling in a managed care dental plan.

Managed care was introduced as a way to lower the rising costs of care. Here's how it works.

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Managed Care Keeps Your Dental Costs Lower

Managed care dental plans create “networks” of dentists, orthodontists, and other dental care professionals. The plan negotiates with this network to set prices much lower than normal. The dentists get more business, and members of the plan save money.

Managed care plans also keep costs lower for everyone by stressing preventive care. That means keeping your teeth healthy by promoting good habits and getting you treatment before problems happen. In most managed care plans, routine trips to the dentist and basic care are made very affordable.

Managed care plans also do utilization review, which means that the plan makes sure necessary care is being provided and used appropriately. Some treatments have to be approved before they'll be covered. If you need a root canal to save a tooth, chances are it will be covered. If you want to get your teeth whitened, your plan probably won't pay for that.

Types Of Managed Care Dental Plans

There are two main kinds of managed care dental plans.

Dental Health Maintenance Organizations — or HMOs — are the more affordable option. They also have the most restrictions. In an HMO plan, you have to get care from dental professionals within the plan network. Otherwise, your care won't be covered.

Dental Preferred Provider Organizations — or PPOs — tend to cost more, but offer more flexibility. In a PPO, you save more money when you get care within the network. But you will still get some coverage when you visit almost any dental professional.

Want to learn more about your dental plan options? Use our free dental insurance quote service to get connected with agents who can help you make an informed decision.

An alternative to managed care dental plans are discount dental programs. Though discount dental plans are not the same as insurance, they provide savings for many of the dental care services you need.

If you'd like to learn more about dental discount plans and purchase online, click here to visit our partner

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