Today marks the feast of St Apollonia, patron saint of dentistry, a day that might prompt you to consider taking out dental insurance.
Apollonia died in 249 having had all her teeth knocked or pulled out during a heathen revolt in Roman times. She entered sainthood after refusing to denounce her Christian faith when threatened with fire, instead herself jumping into the flames.
A shrine in Rome then attracted those seeking relief from toothache and “refuge from diseases of the teeth” who recited a prayer to Saint Apollonia. This saint’s feast is also known as the rather more secular sounding Toothache Day. This is dedicated to raising awareness about good oral health and preventative dental care. It seems then an opportune time to consider the benefits of a dental insurance plan and how you might best take care of your teeth and gums.
The ability to choose your own dentist and to have check-ups and appointments that are convenient to you are among the key benefits of dental insurance plans. Whilst policies and the cover they offer vary, typically a basic dental plan will incorporate preventative care.
That means regular check-ups with the dentist and hygiene treatments that promote not just good oral health but can make your teeth look better. A scrape and polish can put a smile on your face, helping remove unsightly staining which then could also boost your confidence in public.
More comprehensive policies can also prevent some teeth gnashing by warding off unexpected bills for much more costly treatments. Currently the NHS charges £233.70* for crowns, bridges, dentures and other laboratory work. Finally many policies will also provide cover for primary mouth cancer, typically after you’ve completed a short qualifying period.
You will want to consider a number of factors when choosing a dental insurance plan. There are a number of providers, each with their own strengths – so to compare dental insurance you might want to get a specialist like Chase Templeton to get their teeth into the job for you!
Arguably the best known provider is Denplan which, inarguably, is the UK largest dental insurance plan specialist. We’ve done something of a ready reckoner on the benefits of Denplan’s cover which you can view by clicking here.
But there are many other players in the market. AXA PPP dental insurance offers both core and premium cover, advertising plans that cost as little as 33p per day. The policy which attracts you more may depend upon whether you’re looking for everyday dental care or cover that will cover unexpected remedial or restorative treatments, including cancer.
Simply Health dental insurance offers four levels of cover, with costs ranging from less than £9 per month to just over £26. Here the same kinds of benefit are offered – check-ups, dental accidents and emergencies etc. – but with limits varying in line with the premium paid. So the 50% cash back offered for treatment costs under Level 1 is capped at £200, whilst Level 4 cover is a more generous £800.
BUPA dental insurance offers three tiers of cover – Dental Cover 20, Dental Cover 10 and the BUPA Dental Health Plan. Again this is structured so that a number of benefits feature across the board, with limits varying. If you’re keen to minimise your premium but maintain a good preventative regime, then the latter probably suits best. It’ll cover you for two check-ups and scale and polish treatments, plus unlimited clinically appropriate x-rays. If you need regular treatment the policy will provide a 20% discount whilst emergency dental treatment costs will be met up to an annual maximum of £1,000.
A key benefit of WPA’s NHS Top Up: Providential dental plan is that if you already have a dentist, you needn’t change because it covers any UK dentist registered with the General Dental Council.
It’s not a comprehensive dental insurance plan, but nonetheless even its Level One cover will meet 100% of NHS treatment costs on a cashback basis. There’s also protection for dental emergencies whether treatments is required at home or abroad and carried out by an NHS or private dentist. Other benefits include cover for dental injuries and restorative treatment required because of oral cancer.
The simple answer is that if you don’t want to, then you don’t have to. Chase Templeton offers free, expert and impartial advice on both individual, family and company dental insurance. We’ll discuss your available budget and what you’re looking for from a dental insurance plan, before going to market to identify the solution that best fits your needs.
If you’d like to know more about how you can protect yourself or your family with affordable and effective dental insurance, simply call us on 0800 018 3663.
For advice on company dental insurance plans please call our corporate medical insurance experts on 01254 504910.