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How to buy dental insurance

There are several ways to purchase dental insurance. If your employer offers dental insurance as part of your benefits package, or as a voluntary benefit when you start a new job or during open enrollment, which usually occurs in the fall.

If you are self-employed and belong to a trade organizations or other association, they may offer group dental insurance to their members.

If your employer doesn’t offer dental insurance, you can purchase individual dental insurance from a dental insurance company over the phone, through a broker or online. Limited options are available on healthcare.gov or your state’s ACA marketplace.

Can I get dental insurance at any time?

When you can typically purchase dental insurance depends on how and when you are buying it:

  • Group plan through your employer - You can sign up for dental insurance shortly after starting at a different company, after a qualifying life event or during your company’s open enrollment period
  • Via a Medicare Advantage plan - You need to do so during Medicare open enrollment (October 15 to December 7)
  • ACA plan - You need to do so during open enrollment (dates vary, check healthcare.gov or your state’s ACA website for the latest information) or demonstrate that you qualify for a special enrollment period
  • Private insurance - You can buy dental insurance at any time. (Sometimes referred to as personal/individual insurance)

Can I buy dental insurance without a waiting period?

A waiting period is the time period following your coverage start date during which no benefits are paid. In most plans, there are no waiting periods for preventive care, such as cleanings, exams, and X-rays. Basic services such as fillings and simple extractions have a waiting period of six months or less, depending on your state. Major dental work, such as root canals, crowns, implants, and braces have a waiting period of 12 months or less, depending on your state.

Can I buy dental insurance on my own?

Taking care of your teeth and maintaining good oral and overall health can become expensive. Individual dental insurance pays for preventive care, like cleanings and x-rays, that can keep you healthy, but it also helps pay for more extensive, costly and often unexpected expenses, such as filings, crowns and root canals. 

And, if you have young children, timely visits to a dentist can be an important part of your child’s lifelong oral health. Tooth decay is the most common childhood diseases —often causing pain that impacts a child’s sleeping or eating habits, and it may lead to school absences . Dental insurance helps make taking care of a child’s oral health more affordable.

Where can I get dental insurance?

Buying dental insurance through Guardian Direct can be fast, easy and secure. Guardian Direct is available in 44 states and the District of Columbia, 365 days a year so you can purchase dental insurance on your schedule. All enrollments are instantly approved so you can obtain a policy instantly. Guardian accepts multiple payment methods, such as a credit/debit card, ACH, or check and payment schedules, such as monthly, quarterly, or annually depending on what fits your budget. When you purchase online you can feel confident that our secure website guards your security just like banking sites do.

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Sources:

1. https://www.cdc.gov/healthywater/hygiene/disease/dental_caries.html Last accessed November 2019
2. https://www.cdc.gov/oralhealth/basics/childrens-oral-health/index.html Last accessed November 2019

 

*Cost of your plan will vary by state. Individual Dental Insurance products are underwritten by The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America, New York, New York or by one of its wholly owned subsidiaries.  Products are not available in all states. Policy limitations and exclusions apply. The actual limitations and exclusions that apply to your Dental Plan are governed by the policy forms approved for use in your state. Please refer to your policy for a complete list of limitations and exclusions. In the event of a conflict between this document and the language stated in your Guardian insurance policy, the language of the policy shall control. This policy provides DENTAL insurance only. Dental provider networks vary by state, by market and by plan type. Rates are guaranteed for one year for your policy of benefits initially selected. Policies renew annually. Products Underwritten by Guardian Life Insurance Company of America: DENTAL PPO PLANS: Policy Form IP-DEN-16 ET. AL. DENTAL HMO PLANS: FLORIDA Policy Form IP-1-MDG-DHMO-FL-OFF-17 NEW YORK Policy Form IP-MDG-NY-FP-OFF-17. Products Underwritten by Managed Dental Guard, Inc. DENTAL HMO PLANS: NEW JERSEY Policy: IP-MDG-DHMO-NJ-17 TEXAS Policy: IP-1-MDG-DHMO-TX-17. Products Underwritten by First Commonwealth Inc. through its Illinois subsidiaries* DENTAL HMO PLANS: ILLINOIS. Policy: IP-FCW-DHMO-IL-17*First Commonwealth Insurance Company — (IL), First Commonwealth Limited Health Services Corporation — (IL), First Commonwealth of Illinois, Inc.

Guardian Direct plans are underwritten and issued by The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America or its subsidiaries, New York, NY. Products are not available in all states. Policy limitations and exclusions apply. In the event of a conflict between this document and the language stated in your Guardian insurance policy, the language of the policy shall control. GUARDIAN® is a registered service mark of The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America® ©Copyright 2019 The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America.

Brought to you by The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America (Guardian), New York, NY. Material discussed is meant for general illustration and/or informational purposes only and it is not to be construed as tax, legal, investment or medical advice.
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