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If you have served or are currently serving with the U.S. Armed Forces, you are likely eligible for military dental insurance. TRICARE military dental plans offer affordable dental care for you, your spouse and your children.
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Since these programs are run by the government through select providers, you don't have to hunt around to get the best deal. But you may still have questions about what insurance covers and whether it's worth getting it for you and your family members.
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In this article, you will find information about dental insurance for active and retired military personnel to help you make a more informed decision. Our full article on the best dental insurance has more information on common dental plans so you can compare your options.
If you're ready to find a military dental insurance plan that's right for you and your family, you can easily browse the many plans at Dentalinsurance.com. This online marketplace makes it quick and convenient to find and compare insurance plans and discount plans in your country. Additionally, you can call one of their authorized agents for assistance at 888-626-0057 if you need assistance along the way.
All you have to do is enter your zip code and date of birth and you'll see all the dental insurance options in your area.
The national TRICARE program provides health and dental benefits to current and retired personnel of the US Armed Forces and their dependents. Dental TRICARE is separate from medical TRICARE, so don't assume your teeth are covered just because you have health insurance. , too.
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The program is part of the U.S. Department of Defense Military Medical System. Three types of military dental plans are currently available through TRICARE:
You or your spouse may have dental insurance from another source, such as an employer, but it's still a good idea to compare plans. You may find that TDP is more affordable due to the premium features it offers:
The TRDP plan has slightly different benefits for retirees, which you can read more about below. But unlike some traditional dental coverage, you won't be denied coverage because of your age or medical history, and there are no exclusions for pre-existing conditions.
Inactive service members and their families and active duty families can apply for TDP coverage. Active duty members receive separate coverage under ADDP.
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These monthly payments are fixed for one year. The figures above refer to 2017-18 but are subject to change on 1 May each year.
Enrollees Enrollees who began their policies prior to May 1, 2017 will continue to receive Metlife Military Dental Insurance coverage until May 1, 2018. After that date, all policy administration will transition to United Concordia.
The TRICARE dental program is a type of PPO plan, which means you get certain discounts on treatment at TDP network dentists. You can still see any dentist out of network, but your out-of-pocket costs may be higher.
TDP benefits depend on your pay grade and service area. In the table below, you can see the schedule of some common treatments at a licensed dentist in the network. The percentages shown are those paid by the insurance company.
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These amounts are subject to a maximum annual benefit of $1,500 per person. In addition, there is an annual maximum of $1,200 per person for dental accident coverage and a lifetime limit of $1,750 for orthodontics.
Military dental insurance for TRICARE retirees is provided by another provider: Delta Dental. Delta has had this contract since 2012 and now insures more than 1.5 million uniformed service retirees.
Under the TRDP, military retirees of all ages can receive affordable dental care in the United States and around the world. Dental cover covers a wide range of dental treatments including dentures, dental implants, braces and accident and emergency covers.
Eligible pensioners can also register their spouses, as well as children up to the age of 21 (or 23 if they are in full-time education).
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Members can sign up at any time, but those who sign up within four months of quitting can skip the 12-month waiting period for some main treatments (more details below).
You can visit any dentist with a TRDP plan, but Delta says its members save an average of 22% by visiting a TRDP network dentist. This is because these dentists have pre-agreed maximum amounts for each type of treatment.
Another advantage is that network dentists handle your claim directly with the insurance company, rather than having to pay the full amount upfront and then submit cumbersome claim forms.
The following table provides an overview of the coinsurance percentage for various treatments at a TRDP network dentist. Please note that an annual maximum of $1,300 per calendar year applies, except for treatments where a different limit is stated. There is a deduction of $50 per person or $150 per family per year.
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Premiums depend on your location and the number of family members you insure, so you'll need to contact Delta directly for a quote.
If you are receiving a pension, your monthly premium is automatically deducted. Otherwise, you will have to arrange another payment method.
This decision will largely depend on the amount of dental care you need and how much you value the peace of mind that comes from knowing you (and your family) are covered. Tooth decay and dental accidents do not differentiate according to profession!
TDP insurance covers a relatively high percentage of the costs for most basic and complex procedures compared to commercially available dental coverage insurance policies for families and individuals. Premiums are quite competitive, especially if you qualify for the 60% discount. Read more about family insurance here.
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If you compare TRDP insurance with standard private dental insurance, you will likely find that the co-insurance terms are more favorable with TRDP. There is also no age limit, as with some dental insurance for seniors. The annual maximum, however, is not as high as some other dental plans.
In this post, one retired service member explains why he and his family decided they were better off without insurance. He describes the thought process they went through when evaluating whether insurance is really worth it and gives some tips on how to save money if you don't have insurance.
Another option that may be of interest to uninsured or underinsured veterans is dental savings plans. Dental savings plans are the result of a partnership between dentists and insurance companies to help those who cannot afford care access the treatment they need. You pay an annual fee and in return you get treatment at a lower price.
Whether you're looking for savings plans or traditional insurance plans, finding the plan you need is easy with Dentalinsurance.com. This online marketplace allows you to search and compare plans, and you can filter your search by traditional insurance plans or dental savings plans. All you have to do is enter your zip code and date of birth and you'll find the best plans in your area.
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Whatever you decide, we hope you found this article helpful. Our goal is to provide comprehensive information about dental care so you can make the right decision for you and your family.
The TRICARE dental program is available to retired military personnel and has many benefits such as a dental appliance allowance, no waiting period and no annual deductible. However, it may not be the best option for everyone. Some people find that discount dental plans or even private insurance is a better option for them.
Veneers as a restorative procedure may be covered by TRICARE Active Duty Dentistry, TRICARE Dental Program, or TRICARE Retired Dental Program; they will not be covered for cosmetic reasons.
TRICARE does not cover teeth whitening, as it only provides coverage for cosmetic services. Some services, such as peels, may fall into the cosmetic and restorative categories. If they are needed for restoration reasons, they may be covered.
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The TRICARE dental program covers orthodontic services except for National Guard and Reserve sponsors under 23, spouses under 23, and children under 21 or 23 with school enrollment requirements.
Spouses and children are covered under the TRICARE dental program. Surviving spouses and children are also eligible for coverage for 3 years from the date of the sponsor's death.
Amanda specializes in writing informative content about dentistry. He has been a regular contributor since 2017 and works with dozens of dentists to keep this content accurate and up-to-date.
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