Some people come to the dentist’s office, handing the receptionist a medical insurance card, only to find out they aren’t covered. This discovery is upsetting, and you aren’t alone if you’ve wondered why medical insurance doesn’t cover the entire body.
After all, the mouth is a part of the body, and the body is interconnected. When people have an issue with their dental health, it can signify other health-related problems. According to Mayo Clinic, oral health is a window to your overall health and links to various diseases, such as
- Heart Disease
- Pregnancy and birth complications
So, why is dental insurance separate from medical if this is the case? Here are three explanations.
Medical and Dental Care are Separate Fields
The origins of health insurance in the U.S. dates back to the 1850s. However, the modern healthcare insurance system started in the 1920s when hospitals offered services on a pre-paid basis. Then, 34 years later, in 1954, dental insurance came into existence. Back then, these insurances operated as separate entities, which is still true today.
The medical field never accepted dentistry as a part of its practice. Therefore, dentists had to create an independent practice. Since the medical and dental fields had different schools and techniques, they had separate insurance coverage.
Dental Carriers Follow the Dental Practice
This statement might seem obvious. However, because there is a division between the two areas, specialization is necessary to create cost-effective insurance policies. Your medical carrier forms relationships with hospitals and doctor’s offices, providing you with the best coverage for your money.
Dental carriers have the same approach by forming relationships with an extensive network of dentists, allowing you to choose between multiple dentists in your area. Dental carriers also know how to negotiate with dentists for the best discounts.
Insurance Companies See Dental and Medical Insurance Differently
Medical insurance covers the unpredictable illnesses a person might face, which could cost them significantly. People often supplement their medical insurance with critical illness insurance to offset the costs of caring for conditions such as cancer, heart disease, or a stroke.
However, when something goes awry with teeth, an insurance company isn’t as likely to pay as much. Dental coverage covers preventive care, such as dental cleanings. Although, services such as wisdom teeth removal and root canals can become more expensive. It still doesn’t up to the cost of going to the emergency room or going through invasive surgery.
Regardless, taking care of your health overall is vital. While insurance companies view dental insurance as voluntary, we encourage you to opt into it, even if you only need dental cleanings. Since poor dental hygiene leads to discolored teeth, gum disease, and other health-related problems, it’s best not to neglect your teeth. Also, dental insurance reduces out-of-pocket costs.
Contact Malden Solutions today if you’re looking for comprehensive benefits packages.
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