What is the difference between a Cigna dental savings plan and a Cigna insurance plan?
Both Cigna dental insurance and Cigna dental savings plans can help you to keep your teeth and gums in optimum health. That’s important, not just because a great smile is a terrific asset but also because medical researchers are increasingly finding proof that the health of your mouth correlates with the overall health of your entire body.
Cigna dental plans make it easier to afford the dental care that you need to maintain oral health as well as get the treatments you need to address tooth decay, gum infections and weak, failing or missing teeth.
Dental insurance plans keep you covered for a wide range of dental expenses up to a pre-determined amount annually. Cigna even offers a plan with a dedicated allowance for orthodontia (braces), along with preventive and restorative care coverage.
Cigna dental savings plans are an alternative to traditional dental insurance. With a dental savings plan, you save on average 37% off of dental care expenses for you and your family. Select plans also offer savings on pharmacy prescriptions and other essential services. But it is important to remember that dental savings plans (sometimes known as dental discount plans) are not insurance.
Choosing between a Cigna insurance plan and a Cigna dental savings plan is a decision which should be based on your dental care needs, budget, and preferences. Here are some issues to consider when deciding between insurance and savings plans:
Dental Insurance and Dental Savings Plan Prices
Cigna dental insurance starts at around $25 per person, per month – about $300 per person annually (you can get a preventative care only Cigna policy for $17, per person, per month). The cost of a Cigna dental savings plan starts at around $92 annually for an individual, and $136 annually for a family.
Dental Insurance Caps
As do the majority of dental insurance plans, Cigna dental insurance plans cap the amount of coverage that the plan provides annually. Depending on the plan that you choose your cap will be $1,000 to $1,500 per year. Any costs incurred after the annual cap is met is the responsibility of the insured person. If you need a significant amount of dental work done, you may meet the cap earlier than you might prefer. That said, people who have Cigna insurance may quality for discounted rates at some in-network dentists, even after the annual cap is met. You can speak with a Cigna team member to determine if such savings are applicable to your plan and personal situation.
Cigna dental discount plans can be used as often as you wish, there are no annual spending limits.
Dental Insurance Deductibles
Usually, insured individuals must meet their plan deductible before dental insurance begins to cover their dental care. Annual deductibles can vary from $25 to $50 per covered individual, depending on the Cigna dental insurance policy.
Cigna dental savings plans do not have deductibles. Members pay an annual membership fee, allowing them to pay discounted rates at participating dental providers at the time services are rendered.
Cigna Dental Insurance Plan Coverage
Dental insurance plans typically do not cover certain procedures (such as cosmetic services or custom-made athletic mouth guards). Some dental insurance plans also make new members wait before they are covered for specific treatments. For example, many dental insurance policies have exclusions on pre-existing conditions and may require a 6 to 18 month waiting period before paying for major dental treatment. That’s why you don’t want to put off getting dental insurance until you really need it – you may find that your insurance doesn’t immediately cover necessary care for months.
Cigna waives the waiting period for many people who can provide proof of 12 months of ongoing dental insurance coverage. So if you do have an existing insurance plan, or were covered within the last 90 days, the waiting period may be waived. This can vary depending on where you live and the type of coverage you previously had, so check plan details and speak with a Cigna team member to ensure you qualify for the waiver.
Cigna dental savings plans, in contrast to insurance, do not have waiting periods. You can begin to save as soon as your plan activates – typically within 3 business days. Once activated, you can save right away on any dental procedure covered by your plan. There is no paperwork to file either, you simply pay your discounted rate directly to the dentist.
Should I choose Cigna Dental Insurance or a Cigna Dental Saving Plan?
If you want to keep your current dentist, choosing a plan he or she feels is best suited for your needs is a wise choice. So we suggest that you begin your research by talking to your dentist or whoever handles insurance at your dentist’s office – typically that will be the office manager. Find out what type of Cigna dental insurance plans your dentist accepts and which ones he or she particularly recommends for you.
If you don’t have a regular dentist, you can choose one by asking friends and colleagues about their dentists, and/or finding local dentists via dedicated dental search engines on sites such as dentalplans.com to find local dentists). The DentalPlans.com search tool is particularly helpful as it also shows what dental savings plans the dentists accept, along with plans that cover specific dental procedures such as braces, cosmetic services, and other treatments.