Ok, this question keeps coming up again and again, especially during the Annual Election Period (AEP) each year. Medicare does not cover dental. So, if you have Medicare A&B, a Medigap (Medicare Supplement) plan, and a Part D prescription drug plan, there is no dental coverage.
Some Medicare Advantage plans do offer dental, but this is a ‘buyer beware’ because the dental coverage may not be what you think. Remember, these are network plans. Some of these Advantage plans will pay for a cleaning and x-ray for preventative service, and some (usually for an additional monthly premium) will also cover comprehensive dental. But again, there are limitations to this coverage as well. These plans usually are what we would generally describe as discount plans with deductibles and co-pays. These plans also require you to use a dentist in the network and some of these networks are quite small.
There are four things you might consider for dental.
1) Discuss with your current dentist. Many dentists are offering their own dental plan in their office, which gives members of the plan discounts on the dentist’s services.
2) Many Medicare-age folks go to one of the three major dental universities located in Maricopa County where you can receive discount dental services.
3) Folks also drive down to the border and use a dentist in one of the nearby communities in Mexico, where dental service can be as much as 50% less expensive.
4) If you are really serious about shopping and having a dental plan, you can use our search engine at www.123easydental.com. At this site you can enter your birthday, zip code, and hit go, and the site will reveal dozens of dental plans you can purchase, organized by zip code. Monthly premiums vary from $20 to as much as $75 a month, and some have deductibles as well as co-pays. Be sure and select the “details” tab as you visit these plans so that you can review all costs associated with the plan as well as the dentist(s) on the plans network.
In a nutshell, we find that using one of the solutions above, or just paying cash for dental services, saves you money in the long run.