dental care

Dental Insurance vs. Dental Plan
What’s the Difference?

Dental insurance and dental plans are now widely available these days, unlike in the past when the high cost of dental healthcare is an inescapable burden for everyone.

Now, however, you can easily avail of either a dental insurance or a dental plan to help you with your dental needs and expenditures.

But what exactly is the difference between an insurance coverage and a dental plan? A lot of people mistakenly take these two items to be the same, when in fact, there are many differences between the two.

In the past, people could only avail of dental health insurance. They can buy their own coverage or receive one as a benefit from their employers.

However, as time progressed and people’s needs evolved, the dental healthcare industry also changed.

Now, dental insurance, which work exactly like other forms of insurance policies, is not the only choice that people can turn to when they are looking for a means to obtain affordable dental care.

They can also get dental plans for themselves.

The Differences

Dental Insurance A few points that differentiates dental insurance from dental plan are:

  • How to Apply For Dental Insurance
  • How it Works and the Benefits You Gain
  • How to Claim Your Insurance Plan

1. How to Apply For Dental Insurance

The processes of applying for a dental insurance and a dental plan also differ. Applying for a dental plan is easier than applying for a dental health insurance package. The biggest challenge you face in applying for a dental care insurance is the heaps of paperwork you have to accomplish before you can get insured and receive your benefits.

In dental plans, however, application just takes an accomplished membership form and a fully paid application fee. After that, you become a member and can receive discounted dental treatments from the designated dentists partnered with the plan that you joined.

3. How it Works and the Benefits You Gain

In an insurance plan, you can seek the dental treatments that you need, with the corresponding payment paid either in full or partially by your insurance provider. As you can see, this works just like any regular insurance policy does. It covers part of your expenses for the insured item.

In a dental plan, you are entitled to discounts at every visit you make to a dentist. Dental plans already have a set list of dentists who honor discounts for the members of the dental plans. This means that the dental plan provider does not make any payment for the dental procedure you availed of. Instead, you just get discounts. One condition of dental plans is that you make a full payment of the discounted price charged to you at the time of visit. Also, in a dental plan, you do not have to bother with deductibles and waiting periods.

4. How to Claim Your Insurance Plan

The claims processes of the two also differ. Or rather, insurance policies require a strict process in making claims, and there are requirements and guidelines to follow in doing so. On the other hand, in a dental plan, you can simply obtain your discounts and reap the benefits of your plan the same day that you seek a treatment.

In insurance packages, however, there are paperwork that needs to be filled up, some by you, and some by your dental health professionals. This can be quite a hassle, especially since most dentists do not find the time to fill up paperwork for their patients. Aside from that, the claim request will have to go through a pipeline process before it is approved.

The entire process of claiming usually even takes up to around 90 days, which is quite a long time. This will obviously be disadvantageous, not just to you but to your dentist as well.

The Verdict: What Option to Choose

The big competition between dental insurance and dental plans is a tough one. Dental health insurance, however, involves several more considerations than dental plans.

If you decide to choose a dental health insurance package, remember that you need to think about annual deductibles, spending limits, waiting periods, limits on the coverage, and the monthly or annual premiums.

All in all, dental insurance is more complicated, but it also offers a wide range of benefits.

When it comes to costs, you will probably spend more on a dental health insurance coverage than on a dental plan.

Dental plans, however, are simpler to acquire and they are also very affordable.

However, making a choice between the two still depends on your specific needs. 

If dental plans is the choice for you, you cannot find a better place than dental and their comparison report to start out.


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