The big question when it comes to dental implants is: will my insurance cover dental implants? At first, it may seem that a dental implant is a cosmetic procedure and therefore not covered by insurance–and in some cases that may be true.
But as anyone who is missing a tooth or teeth can tell you, the loss of teeth is a major health problem that affects more about their body than just their smile.
Getting your health insurance to pay part of the cost of this dental care is essential.
There are certainly parts of the dental implant procedure that insurance companies will cover (though all dental insurance plans offered are different and you should consult them before you undergo major procedures). One of the most commonly covered parts of dental implant care is tooth extraction. For some people, they will already be missing the tooth, but for others, removal of a bad tooth is necessary. And the good news is that most dental insurance coverage will pay for tooth extraction.
Bone grafting comes next in the dental implant process. At this point, the jawbone is reinforced to establish a secure foundation for the implant. Although this is an important part of the procedure, not all plans cover this.
The third step is actually implanting the implant. This is a major dental procedure according to insurance companies, which doesn’t necessarily mean that they will reject your claim. “major dental” refers more to cost than the intensity of the surgery. Check your insurance benefits, but it’s common for dental plans to cover up to half of this.
Finally, we come to placing the artificial tooth (which is different from placing the implant). The artificial tooth is a crown that looks like a natural tooth. This is part of the procedure that most insurance companies will cover at least some part of. Insurance providers usually consider crowns a much more common and necessary procedure than other aspects of dental implantation.
Will Dental Insurance Cover Implant Crowns?
While an insurance company may not cover the total cost of the implant, it may very well cover the cost of the crown, bridge, or denture that is part of the dental implant.
Does Dental Insurance Cover Full Mouth Implants?
In cases where someone needs an entirely new set of teeth, due to dental deterioration or for cosmetic reasons, a full mouth implant can be done. This procedure involves replacing all or most of the teeth in a person’s mouth with implants. It’s a major procedure, and it’s not cheap. A full mouth implant requires a lot of time and precision by the orthodontist. Subsequently, the procedure requires a lot of waiting on the part of the patient.
Insurance companies almost never cover these procedures, unless there is a medical need, such as traumatic injury to the face, or severe infection. However, even in these cases, it will be an uphill battle getting your dental insurance to pay out for a full mouth implant.
How To Get Dental Implants Covered by Insurance
Getting medical insurance to cover your implants means that you need to prove that your implants are a medical necessity.
If you suffer from bone atrophy caused by osteoporosis, or diabetes, your provider may cover dental implants. Insurance companies will also cover this procedure if you suffer traumatic injuries that affect your ability to chew.
Sometimes, cancer treatments require the extraction of some teeth, and insurance will cover it. Some prescription drugs can lead to dry mouth and tooth decay. This can include antihistamines, blood pressure medications, and antidepressants.
Ultimately, the decision to cover your tooth implants comes down to the insurance company that you use.