Are you familiar with The DaVinci Code?
Most people are. It quickly became one of the most commercially successful novels to date after its initial printing in 2003, and it went on to spawn a series of blockbuster novels and a movie franchise.
In a nutshell, the story of The DaVinci Code involves an intricate code hidden within the works of Leonardo DaVinci, which holds the key to a secret that can change the world as we know it. The plot is complex, multi-faceted, and offers a mental challenge to readers. With a careful interpretation, and preferably a solid grounding in history, art, and religion, the average reader can enjoy “cracking” The DaVinci Code.
That’s great for an edge-of-your-seat thriller. However, when we think of more practical scenarios in life, having to spend time and resources figuring out a solution is the exact opposite of what we want.
A great example of this is the process of identifying and understanding the options for affordable dental care. It simply shouldn’t be that hard. Take a look at these three ways to easily discover dental savings - no map or diagram needed:
Cracking the code of affordable dental care
The “code” of affordable dental care is actually incredibly simple. You might say it’s as easy as 1-2-3.
- Practice appropriate self-care for oral health
- Research all available financing options and choose what’s best for you
- Focus on regular prevention and maintenance
1) Practice oral health self-care
Establishing and maintaining the simple habits that promote optimal oral health is the easiest, most effective method for controlling the cost of dental care. Regularly practicing the following can make your average dental care expenditures minimal:
- Brush properly at least twice per day with a soft bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste
- Floss properly at least once per day
- Rinse at least once per day with an unsweetened antibacterial mouthwash
- Visit your dentist once every six months for a professional cleaning and routine examination
The first three points can be accomplished for just a few dollars a month. The fourth point can require an investment. For those without traditional dental insurance, there are dental insurance alternatives, such as dental discount cards, that can provide 20%-50% off the normal retail cost of dental care.
2) Research dental insurance and dental discounts
If you have access to affordable dental insurance through an employer or government program, you should be able to have your general cleaning and examinations fully covered. Of course, you’re responsible for paying whatever premiums are associated with the plan, so the total cost of coverage should be considered when reviewing options.
Dental discount programs are different from insurance coverage, as the savings available are based on discounts off the retail cost of services rather than on a set coverage amount or schedule of fully covered services. Again, the discounts and out-of-pocket expenses should be considered when comparing plans.
Generally speaking, without some form of dental financing in place, you can expect to pay a significant amount annually for just the regular, preventive dental care you or your family need.
"Establishing and maintaining the simple habits that promote optimal oral health is the easiest, most effective method for controlling the cost of dental care. Regularly practicing the following can make your average dental care expenditures minimal."
3) Focus on prevention and maintenance
Unfortunately, many people with no dental insurance or discount plan in place tend to ignore oral health preventive care and choose instead to only seek out dental care if and when an emergency arises.
Not only can this result in unnecessary pain and suffering, but it often ends up costing far more than obtaining and using an insurance or dental discount plan.
Focusing on prevention and maintenance, specifically by taking care of your teeth every day at home and having a professional deep cleaning and thorough examination twice a year, can greatly reduce the possibility of cavities, periodontal disease, infections, and other causes of expensive emergency dental visits.
Together, these three simple steps provides a surefire method for maintaining a healthy smile and unlocking the key to more affordable care. No convoluted plots to follow, no controversial conclusions to argue about. Just clean, healthy teeth and gums, and more money in your pocket.