How Our Dental Membership Plan Works

“We’ll send you a bill in the mail.” 

You dread those words you’ve heard at countless doctor or dentist’s offices. If you don’t have insurance, you know that bill is going to be insanely high. And even if you have insurance, if you haven’t met your deductible yet, what you owe is likely going to put a major dent in your budget. 

This is just one of the many reasons to consider using a membership plan, especially for dental services. 

Keep reading to find out more about dental membership plans, and how our plan works. 

A young man helps a lady with electronic check in at dental depot

What is a dental membership plan?

A dental membership plan is a subscription payment option for your dental services. Think of it like Netflix for your oral health. 

You pay a flat rate per member — billed on an annual or monthly basis — to cover a specific set of services and get discounts on services not covered by the plan. 

For example, our Express Smile dental membership plan includes your recommended exams, cleanings, fluoride treatments, and X-rays for the year. Then, if you need a more extensive service, like a crown or a root canal, you’d get that service at a significant discount. 

Many patients opt for a dental membership plan in lieu of dental insurance, and for most, it’s a much more affordable option. 

How does our dental membership plan work?

The beauty of our dental membership plan is, once you sign up, you won’t really have to think about it again. Your membership is automatically integrated into your chart, so when you book appointments, the front desk staff will see what’s covered under your plan. 

If you need any services not covered by your plan, you’ll be informed upfront (no surprises!) about what your out-of-pocket costs will be, after your plan discounts. 

We’ll let you know when your plan is up for renewal, but beyond that, your account doesn’t need any ongoing maintenance. Still, if you’d like to see your plan progress at any time, you can log in to your account anytime through our website.

Benefits of a dental membership plan vs. dental insurance

More and more patients are opting out of dental insurance and going with a dental membership plan instead, for two main reasons: 

  1. Affordability
  2. Transparency

Let’s talk affordability first. 

We tend to think of dental insurance as a must-have, just like health insurance, car insurance, or life insurance. It may not be the most affordable option for everyone, however. 

Often, your dental insurance premiums and copays add up to more money than you’d actually spend on your dental care each year. Your twice yearly cleanings and exams will likely be covered, but the insurance company is also accounting for possible additional coverage needed. If you don’t wind up needing that additional coverage, you’re likely overpaying for coverage in that particular year. 

With a dental membership plan, you only pay for the care you know you’ll need. If anything else comes up throughout the year, you’ll get those services at a discounted rate (typically no more than you’d pay out-of-pocket for the insurance-negotiated rate — see our full list of savings). 

Now, what about transparency? 

If you do wind up needing additional care, like the crown or root canal examples we mentioned above, you won’t know how much that service is going to cost you until after you’ve had that service done and your insurance company has negotiated the best rate for you. That means putting the cart before the horse and hoping that bill you get in the mail won’t be too painful. 

With a dental membership plan, you always know exactly what your out-of-pocket costs will be — before you go through any procedures. If it’s a particularly expensive service, you’ll be able to discuss your options with your dental care team to decide if this is an urgent need or if you can afford a little time to save up the necessary funds.  

All-in-all, a dental membership plan puts the control over your dental health back in your hands, rather than forcing you to make decisions about your health based on insurance coverage. 

How can you sign up for our dental membership plan?

It’s easy-as-pie to sign up for one of our dental membership plans. One of our staff members can help you sign up while you’re in the exam chair, so all your information will be in our system and you’ll be good to go. 

You can also sign up from home on our website, or you can call our office at any time.

How do you manage your plan?

You can always access your account through our website, but there’s really nothing to manage once you’re signed up! Our dental membership plans are really a set-it-and-forget-it kind of thing. 

Written by Rachel Honeyman


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