We recently discovered that some of our members were missing out on the significant savings they could experience at their dental visits because they weren’t sure how their discount dental plan actually worked.
We want to help change that and make sure all of our members have great stories to tell like these.
Below, we’ll walk you through the steps for how to use your discount dental plan and maximize your savings at the dental office.
If you don’t already have a discount dental plan and would like to find out more about them, see how they compare to typical out-of-pocket prices at the dental office. Want to try it for yourself? You can cancel the plan in 30 days for a full refund, less your processing fee, if you aren’t satisfied with your plan after that first dental visit.
Using Your Discount Dental Plan
Step 1: Find a Dentist Who Accepts Your Plan
As you’re looking for a dentist, remember to choose a provider that’s in your plan’s network — just like you would with any health coverage or traditional insurance plan.
Think of discount dental plans like a Costco membership. To receive the benefits of that membership, you have to go to a Costco store to buy the products. With the Careington 500 plan, you have to go to a provider in the Careington 500 network. With the Dental Access plan, you have to go to a provider in the Dental Access network. That’s how you get the network discounts!
Dentists on each network have agreed to offer discounts on treatment for anyone who has one of our plans. Therefore, going to one of these dentists is vital for receiving the discounts promised.
How to Find a Dentist Near You
- Know what type of dentist you need to see – like a general dentist or a specialist. For dental work like regular teeth cleanings, tooth fillings, root canals and more, a general dentist will be your best bet and the one you’ll be able to save the most with. For more specialized work like dental implants, wisdom teeth removal and some root canals, you’ll want to visit a specialist.
- Use our provider search page to find a dentist near you.
You can search for a dentist by zip code or name.
If you are searching only by zip code, you can adjust the mile radius based on how far you’re willing to drive to see a dentist. With our network of over 100,000 dental access points in the U.S., there’s usually one close by!
Once you’ve pulled up a list of dentists, jot down a few of their names. You can then search them specifically to see hours of operation, reviews, etc., to help you make the choice that’s right for you and your family.
Step 2: Schedule an Appointment Using this Script
Once you’ve found a dentist you’d like to visit, the next step is to call and schedule an appointment. When using a 1Dental discount dental plan, make sure you refer to the plan by its name (for instance, the Careington Care 500 plan or the Dental Access Plan powered by the Aetna Dental Network).
Here’s a sample script you can use when you call [acting as Sally]:
DENTAL ADMIN: Hello, thank you for calling our dental office!
SALLY: Hi, my name is Sally and I was calling to schedule a new patient appointment at your office. Can I verify that you accept the Careington Care 500 Discount Dental Plan?
DENTAL ADMIN: We do! Looks like we have this Friday or the following Tuesday available at 3:00. Would either of those days work for you?
SALLY: Next Tuesday at 3:00 would work!
DENTAL ADMIN: Great. Can I get your full name and phone number?
SALLY: Yes. It’s Sally Smith. My number is 888-888-8888.
DENTAL ADMIN: And what is your Member ID number for your dental plan?
DENTAL ADMIN: And the Group ID number on the card?
DENTAL ADMIN: Thank you. I’ve got this entered into our system and we will see you next Tuesday at 3:00. Are there any other questions I can help answer?
SALLY: Yes. About how much will this visit cost with my dental plan?
DENTAL ADMIN: We like to do a series of bitewing x-rays on a first-time dental visit and an initial cleaning. You’ll also have an oral evaluation by the dentist. With your dental plan… let me see… that should be $92. Assuming there aren’t any other problems that arise that the dentist believes needs to be addressed immediately. But we will discuss that with you at your visit if anything else comes up.
SALLY: Great. Thank you very much!
Referring to your discount plan by its name is so important! Most dental offices will not recognize the plan if you only refer to it as the “1Dental plan.” 1Dental is our company name. We sell the plans the dental offices have agreed to accept. The name of your plan should appear in the top right corner of your membership card.
Step 3: Print/Download Your Discounted Prices to Take to Your Visit
We have a list of pre-approved discounted prices for our Careington Care 500 plan on our website that members can refer to when they go to the dentist. We recommend printing or downloading our fee schedule to take with you to the dental office. This ensures you receive the correct discounts that our participating dentists have agreed to provide to our members.
While we don’t have a fee schedule for the Dental Access Plan powered by the Aetna dental network, members can speak to their dentist about pricing for this plan and expect to save at least 15%.
We’ve also created a Dental Plan Savings Resource for our members. This resource breaks out some of our fee schedule prices by treatment visits in easier-to-understand terminology. For instance, if you need to go to a general dentist for a root canal, here’s what you might expect to see included on your bill:
These sample schedules are based on national averages with the Careington Care 500 plan. Your dentist may or may not choose these exact procedures for your particular visit, but, overall, it helps you see what kind of things to expect.
Step 4: Visit the Dentist and Ask Questions
Once you’ve chosen a dentist in our provider network, have done some research on their office and called to schedule an appointment, it’s time to make the visit!
At your dental visit, don’t be afraid to ask your dentist questions about his practice, the work that you need to have done and even the cost. If an exam determines that you need additional dental work, ask the dentist how you can get the work done while benefiting from your plan discounts.
Step 5: Review Your Treatment Plan Against Your List of Discounted Prices
You’ve gone to your dentist; you’ve gotten dental x-rays, a teeth cleaning and an oral evaluation and then your dentist hands you your treatment plan and you see the gut-wrenching number at the bottom of the sheet — $1,500!
The dentist has done an oral evaluation and come up with a diagnosis. You need several fillings and a root canal— an amount of work that can be pricey even with a discount dental plan or dental insurance. But DO NOT PANIC.
Treatment plans may take months to complete. You will not be expected to get everything done at once! It’s something that will be broken up over time.
You can talk to your dentist about his proposed treatment plan and how to break up the payments for you. This will allow you time to plan your budget for the work you need. Don’t be afraid to ask! The dentist is there to help you.
If you have CareCredit, an HSA account, FlexSpend or other means of payment, you can use it with your discount plan to pay for your treatment.
What If I’m Not Getting the Discounts?
Not seeing the correct pricing or treatment name between your bill and our fee schedule? Ask your dentist for the ADA codes for the procedures he/she is recommending. These codes specify which procedure is needed so you can quickly compare the code to the codes we list on our fee schedule.
If anything seems off with the prices listed on the website, ask the dentist for clarification on that. And feel free to call our friendly representatives at 833-692-5966 if you have questions about your bill.
Sometimes a crown that particular dental office uses may not be listed on the schedule. However, there are highly comparable crowns on our fee schedule. You may just need to ask about getting one of those instead so you can receive a more affordable price on the work you need.
Step 6: Continue Using Your Plan as Often as You Need
One of the great things about our plans is that there are no annual maximums. You and your family can use your plan again and again, as often as you need. This is not only great for those routine dental visits each year, but any additional work you need, as well.
What Questions Do You Have About Using Your Dental Plan?
We hope that gave you some helpful information for how to use your discount dental plan. Please subscribe to our blog for more tips and helpful info about how to use your plan and care for your dental health.
Do you have any other questions for us? Leave them in the comments below! We’d love to help answer them for you.