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What is a Dental Insurance Annual Maximum?

A dental insurance annual maximum is the maximum dollar amount your plan will pay toward the cost of dental services within a specific period, usually a calendar year. If you have dental insurance or want to get a plan, it’s important to understand your annual maximum so you can make the most of your benefits. Read on to learn more about how dental insurance annual maximums work.

What does an annual maximum mean for dental insurance?

Many dental insurance plans come with an annual maximum. This is the money that the insurance company offers. It will go toward qualifying dental treatments you receive over a benefit period, which is typically 12 months.1

If your annual maximum is $1,000, for example, your dental insurance plan will pay its portion of the bill up to $1,000 within that year. Once the new year starts, your annual maximum will reset, and a new benefits period will start. Ideally, you’d schedule any treatments you need before the end of the year so you can get the most out of your annual maximum.

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What counts toward your dental insurance annual maximum?

While every dental plan is different, many plans may not count preventative and diagnostic treatments, like cleanings, exams, and routine X-rays, toward the annual maximum. Most dental plans cover routine care.

You should reach out to your dental insurance company to figure out what does and doesn’t count toward your maximum.

How does dental insurance with no annual maximum work?

Believe it or not, there are some dental insurance plans without annual maximums. If you sign up for one, there won’t be any limit on what the insurance company will cover.2 They’ll pay out for all qualifying procedures that are listed in your policy. Keep in mind that this type of plan is usually more expensive than plans with annual maximums.

How to check your annual maximum

Here are two ways you can find out what your annual maximum is:

Check online

Log into your dental insurance company’s website with your username and password. Once you do, you should be able to find all the details of your plan in your online dashboard, including your annual maximum.

Call your dental insurance provider

You can call your dental insurance company directly and ask them about your annual maximum. Be prepared to prove your identity and state your policy number.

What happens when you reach your annual maximum?

Once you reach your annual maximum, you must pay for 100% of the cost of the dental treatments you receive in that benefit period.3 While your annual maximum might seem like a lot of money, understand that dental costs can add up quickly. Therefore, it’s important to plan accordingly so you can make the most out of your benefits.

Get a quote for dental insurance

If you’re looking for affordable dental insurance, Aflac is a good option to consider. We offer dental insurance plans with an annual maximum benefit that increases over time. Plus, waiting periods are mostly minimal for preventative care. It's less money by using in-network providers, and have the option to get a plan with vision or hearing services. For more information, start chatting with an agent and get a quote today!

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