Friday, October 23, 2015

Coordinate your Dental Insurance and Save Money!

With the ever continual discussion about managed healthcare, dental has not been affected by the Affordable Care Act. However, there are a few techniques you can utilize to help reduce your out of pocket expenses. And while it is virtually impossible to obtain free dentistry, these methods can help you save more at the dental office.

Savings Tips to Reduce Dental Costs and Expenses
  1. Don’t wait until the end of the year to start your dental treatment plan. Most insurance plans are based on the calendar year (January through December). And on December 31, the clock is reset on your benefits package. That includes your yearly deductibles and maximums. Starting early in the year gives you an opportunity to use all your benefits before they expire.
  2. Don’t put off dental work that can be performed this year. For the same reasons listed above, utilize all your benefits before December 31 then continue in January should you need additional work completed.
  3. Enroll in a discount dental plan to cover services not covered by your insurance plan. The key is to choose a dentist that takes both plans and then you select the plan for that service. If your insurance has a waiting period for certain procedures, use the discount plan for that procedure. If you need more services that what is paid for by your insurance, continue obtaining services but at the discounted fee. Many insurance plans also restrict orthodontics, implants, white fillings, additional cleanings and cosmetic dentistry. And while you have to pay the reduced fee, at least you are saving hundreds of dollars by obtaining a discount rather than having to pay full price should you not have a discount plan.
  4. And should you lose your job or retire, you’ll lose the dental insurance but the discount dental plan can continue as your primary dental benefit!
Since 1978, American Dental Plan has provided tens of thousands of Arizona residents a cost effective approach to obtaining dental services. Over 750 participating general and specialty dentists throughout Arizona!  See how we can help you.  Visit and enroll today.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Full Dental Benefits Available to AZ Seniors

Many seniors who have retired from employment have realized that AZ Medicare does not provide routine dental care. And since traditional dental insurance is available mostly to employer groups, and the Affordable Care Act excludes routine dental services, where can an AZ Senior obtain affordable dental care without age or employment restrictions?

American Dental Plan has the Solution!

For a yearly membership fee of only $59* for one person, or $79* for two, members of the dental plan receive an exam and 4 x-rays at no charge (which more than pays for the cost of membership) and savings up to 40% on additional services such as cleanings, fillings, dentures, root canals, bridges and more! There are no waiting periods nor claim forms and over 700 general and specialty dentists participate with the Plan.

Unlike traditional dental insurance, American Dental Plan allows two individuals to enroll as a “couple” as long as they reside in the same residence. They are not required to be married nor does the couple have to include one male and one female.

To learn more about American Dental Plan for Seniors, visit or contact them directly at (602) 265-6677 during normal business hours.

*first year membership requires an additional $10 one-time enrollment fee

Thursday, October 1, 2015

American Dental Plan Expands to Kingman, AZ

While the local dentists located in smaller communities have usually not participated with discount style dental plans, American Dental Plan, (serving Arizona since 1978) now offers two general dentists in Kingman, AZ.

Riata Dental and Absolute Smiles have recently joined the provider network of American Dental Plan. 

Members of the dental savings plan receive an exam and 4 x-rays per membership year with savings up to 40% on additional dental services including cleanings, fillings, root canals, crowns and more!

In addition to Kingman, dentists located in other smaller communities that participate with American Dental Plan include Prescott, Prescott Valley, Casa Grande and Yuma.  

The address and phone numbers of these providers can be found at or you can contact American Dental Plan directly at (602) 265-6677.

Enjoy the many benefits of American Dental Plan and keep on smiling!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Dental Savings Plans, a cost effective approach to obtaining dental care

For many years, the standard method of obtaining dental care was through a traditional dental insurance policy. These policies were issued exclusively by licensed insurance companies who, based on claims rates, would price the cost of dental care to large employee groups. Individuals had no access to traditional dental insurance since the pricing of insurance was based on large groups on which to spread the costs.

Fast forward to today and you see a variety of options for individuals, (and their families) to obtain dental services at substantial savings. Whether the dental plan is offered by a third party company or directly from the dentist, it merely involves joining a membership group that offers discounts to its members for dental services. Since these dental savings plans are not insurance, it does not require an insurance company to issue nor administrate. However, many insurance companies are now offering Dental Savings Plans in addition to their traditional insurance model.

Although the premise of the dental savings plan seems simple, some dentists are constructing what’s defined as a “prepaid dental plan” which requires proper licensing and registration with the State Departments of Insurance. And since these dentists are not following the state Statutes governing “prepaid dental plans” they are considered in violation of State Insurance laws.

In addition, by purchasing a dental plan directly from a dentist, you are limiting your ability to obtain a second opinion, the ability to utilize a Specialist and your dental plan will become worthless should the dentist close their business, end the plan or retire all together.

What should you look for when evaluating a Dental Savings Plan?

1. First and foremost, longevity of the dental plan. The longer a dental plan has been in business, the more successful it has been retaining its provider network and membership base.
2. Look at the size of the provider network. A couple of dental offices cannot provide all the services necessary as can a network of several hundred in your metropolitan area.
3. Yearly membership costs. Some plans when you factor in the membership fee and the minimal reduction in costs end up costing you more in the long run than paying full price for the dental service if/when you may need it.
4. Are any services provided free of charge? A third party Dental Savings Plan can offer it but a proprietary dentist’s plan cannot, unless they are properly licensed and governed by the Department of Insurance.

Dental Savings Plans are widely being accepted as the cost effective alternative to traditional dental insurance. Should you be in the market for such a plan, consider American Dental Plan, Arizona’s oldest dental savings plan since 1978.  Yearly membership fees start at only $59 and membership includes a free exam and 4 x-rays with savings up to 40% on additional dental services. There are over 750 general and specialty dentists and no referrals are required to see a Specialist.  Complete details including the fee schedule and list of participating dentists can be found at

Monday, September 1, 2014

Do You Grind Your Teeth? Ways to Address Bruxism

Are you a grinder? Many people have the issue of grinding their teeth, some are not even aware of it, because they grind in their sleep. This habit is called bruxism, and it can really wear down enamel and cause issues with the tooth structure over a long period of time. It can also cause jaw and neck pain, and lead to TMJ, or Temporomandibular joint dysfunction.  

The main causes of a grinding disorder are due to stress, and this becomes a side effect or habit, like nail biting, only we are not conscious of it. Here are some of the main signs you grind your teeth:
  • Soreness in jaw
  • A dull-aching headache that is consistent
  • Grinding at night becomes audible
  • You may notice cuts inside your cheeks
If you notice jaw pain, wear on your molars, or catch yourself grinding, here are some tips to help:
  • Knowing about bruxism is the first step, now you can seek the help of a professional for a diagnosis and recommendations for treatment.
  • Find ways to cope and eliminate stress, such as breathing, meditation, yoga, taking a walk, going to the gym, and being aware of stressors. 
  • Once you are diagnosed, a combination of options may be recommended, such as muscle relaxant medication, a mouth guard to wear while you sleep, or sometime surgery is necessary in severe cases.
The best next-step is to visit your dentist, so you can take care of the issue sooner than later.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Cavities Contagious? Say It Isn’t So!

Is it possible that cavities can be contagious? Yes, according to recent research studies conducted by the University of Louisville school of Dentistry. Tooth decay or “dental caries” is the one, common most chronic disease to impact children, and now, new research indicates cavities may be infectious. 

Research findings showed mothers with cavities can transmit caries-producing oral bacteria to their infants if they clean their pacifiers by sticking them in their own mouths first, or share utensils with their babies before feeding them. 

Findings of the study were posted on Science Daily® in February. 

As stated by Liliana Rozo D.D.S, an AAPD board certified pediatric dentist and assistant professor, University of Louisville School of Dentistry, “decay can have a detrimental effect on a child's quality of life, performance in school and success in life. According to Ruzo, it is a common mistake for parents to make because they do not make the connection between oral health and overall health, but they are related. “The mouth is an open door for many microbial infections to enter the bloodstream. Poor oral health may be a risk factor for systemic disease.”

Parents are now encouraged to make appointments for their babies with a pediatric dentist as soon as their first teeth erupt through the gums by the The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD). This helps parents establish a relationship with their children’s dentist, and help familiarize and inform them about proper hygiene, teething, normal tooth development, and trauma prevention.  

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Your Mouth: The Gateway to Health

Perhaps you have heard the saying that our eyes are the windows to our souls, but it is also said that our mouths are the openings to our overall health.

The health of our teeth and gums are big indicators of our general health. The problems that begin in our mouths may provide clues that connect to other health issues.

American Dental Plan has blogged about this topic before, because of the significant connection between your oral health and how it affects the rest of your body. 
Think of your mouth as the gateway, and it is a breeding ground for bacteria and plaque to grow and become more harmful if the care-taker (you) does not brush, floss and see the dentist regularly to keep it under control. Hygiene is the key to neutralize acids, ward off inflammation, cavities, infections, and gum disease and to prevent larger health issues, such as:

  • Heart disease and Endocarditis: A build-up of plaque can lead to inflammation, infection, clogged arteries and a stroke. In addition high levels of bacteria and germs can spread through your blood stream causing infection in the lining of your heart (endocardium) and can lead to Endocarditis, damaging heart tissue.
  • Premature birth: Severe gum disease can lead to premature birth and/or low birth weight.
  • Blood sugar and diabetes: There is an increased chance of gum disease for those who have diabetes and issues controlling their blood sugar levels.
  • Osteoporosis: When people experience issues with their tooth and periodontal bone loss, this may also be an indicator that other bones in the body are becoming weak and brittle.

These and other health issues are all potential risks when there is an absence of consistent oral care and hygiene. What can be the best preventative approach to protect you? Follow these practices:
  1. Brush your teeth twice a day
  2. Floss ever day 
  3. Maintain a healthy diet 
  4. Minimize high-fructose corn syrup, starches and sugars from your diet 
  5. Replace your toothbrush every 90 days 
  6. Visit your dentist and dental hygienist every six months for cleanings and exams 
You are the gate-keeper to your oral health. If you are over-due for a cleaning or check up, make sure to get back on a routine to ensure better health.