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Best Dental Insurance in Maryland: An Overview and Plan Comparison

Contributors:  
Choosing the right insurance plan can get complicated

Are you searching for dental insurance in Maryland? If so, we know how difficult it can be to navigate the various plans available to you. We’ve compiled information in our guide below about the different options you can choose from for dental insurance in Maryland.

In this guide, we will cover:

  • Dental plan types
  • Important plan features
  • Dental plans in Maryland

After reviewing the below information, we hope you will be able to find the best dental insurance for you. For a complete guide to dental plans nationwide, review our resource here.

Dental insurance plans

Preferred provider organization (PPO)

PPO plans are a popular option for dental insurance because they provide the greatest flexibility. They are also usually the most expensive premiums you will pay when compared to other types of plans.

With a PPO, you are able to either receive services from a dentist in the network or even out of the network if you like. However, if you do choose a dentist out-of-network, it is generally more expensive and also requires that you fill out additional paperwork to file the claim.

Preventative services such as routine cleanings, exams, and x-rays are typically no cost to you because they are 100% covered. Many times though, services such as orthodontics, implants, and teeth whitening are either partially covered or not at all. You will want to check with your provider regarding those services.

Dental health maintenance organization (DHMO) 

Another option for dental plans is the DHMO. This is a good choice if you are looking to stay on a tighter budget and don’t quite need the flexibility that a PPO offers. You are required to choose a primary care dentist that’s in the network of providers. If you do see an out-of-network dentist, it will be your cost to cover.

Similar to PPO plans, preventative services such as routine cleanings, exams, and x-rays are covered.

Dental discount plans

Dental discount plans are very different from the above mentioned dental insurance plans. That’s mainly because it’s not insurance. It’s a plan that you pay a fee to participate in and you receive a discount card that allows you to receive dental services at a discounted rate.

There is a network of dentists that you can choose from, and when you do see a dentist, you will pay your balance to them directly. The nice thing about this is that there is no paperwork to complete.

Important plan features

Cost

When evaluating dental plans in Maryland, many people put cost at the top of their list as a deciding factor. Several different items make up the overall cost of the dental plan, as described below:

  • Premium: the amount you pay monthly or annually, whether or not you receive dental services.
  • Co-payment: a set amount or percentage of the overall total that you will pay to the dentist at the time of service.
  • Deductible: how much you are responsible for paying before your insurance provider contributes towards the amount owed for services.
  • Maximum limits: the total amount a policy will pay, based on either an annual or lifetime limit. Once it’s reached, you are responsible for anything above that.

Coverage

When it comes to coverage, you should really consider what services you will need. Of course, a plan that covers preventative services is ideal. And most plans do cover these types of services.

More advanced dental services like orthodontics, implants, and teeth whitening are not always covered though, and if these are services you think you may want or need, it’s important to consider the amount of coverage each plan provides.

Waiting period

With certain plans, you may be required to wait for a set amount of time before you can receive some dental services. This could be 6 to 12 months in some cases. If you need dental services immediately, checking out a plan’s waiting period is something you will want to make a priority.

Dental insurance plans in Maryland

BlueCross BlueShield CareFirst

Dental insurance from BlueCross BlueShield
Multiple plans for varying budgets and coverage needs.

BlueCross BlueShield offers two PPO plans and one DHMO, as described below.

Blue Dental Preferred

This PPO plan gives great flexibility and coverage. With a large network of providers, it is easy to choose a dentist within the network. When you stay in-network, all preventative services like exams, cleanings, and x-rays are no cost to you. If you want to see a dentist out-of-network, you can. You will just need to pay money out of pocket. 

A unique feature of this plan is that there are two options you can choose from regarding deductibles: a high option and a low option. The high option features lower deductibles with preventative and diagnostic services completely covered without having to meet a deductible. The low option features lower premiums, but higher deductibles.

Dental HMO

The DHMO plan is a more budget friendly plan offered by BlueCross BlueShield in Maryland. You can choose from either making a one-time annual payment or quarterly payments for the plan.

As with all DHMOs, if you see a dentist out-of-network, you will be expected to pay for the services on your own. However, if you visit an in-network dentist, you will be covered, always knowing exactly the cost of routine and major dental procedures.

You are required to keep this plan for one full year once you enroll.

Preferred Dental

Another PPO option from BlueCross BlueShield Maryland is the Preferred Dental plan. It provides coverage for routine dental services. All preventative services like exams, cleanings, and x-rays are fully covered as long as you use an in-network dentist. You have the option to choose from over 5,000 participating dentists.

If you go out-of-network for routine services, you will face higher out-of-pocket costs and need to complete claim forms as well. 

There is no annual deductible that needs to be met, and referrals are not required.

Delta Dental

dental insurance from Delta
Access a large dental network

Delta Dental offers two PPO plans and one DHMO.

Delta Dental PPO Premium Plan

With the premium plan, you get greater coverage and lower out-of-pocket costs. You will have a higher premium though. The nice thing about the enhanced coverage with this plan is that root canals, crowns, dentures, and tooth implants are covered after one year. That is not common with dental insurance, so if that’s something you may need, this is a great feature.

There is a $50 annual deductible per person each year and a $1,500 annual maximum per person.

Delta Dental PPO Basic Plan

The basic plan is similar to the plan above, but just doesn’t offer the same extensive coverage. And of course, the premium is less expensive. All routine cleanings, exams, and x-rays are immediately covered at 100%. Also, there is a $50 annual deductible per person each year and a $1,000 annual maximum per person.

DeltaCare USA MDA60 Individual/Family Dental Program

The DHMO plan requires that you select a primary care dentist to receive your dental services. You will need to pay a small copay for your routine preventative services such as exams, cleanings, and x-rays. There isn’t an annual deductible or annual maximum with this plan, which is nice.

Dominion National

Dental insurance from Dominion National
Additional benefits for expecting mothers and individuals with diabetes.

Select Plan Basic

With this DHMO plan, you will have low copays that will need to be paid directly to the dentist when you receive services. Patients with diabetes and those who are pregnant will receive additional cleanings that are covered under this plan.

A discount is offered on any implant services, and there are fixed fees for dental procedures. Some advantages to this plan are no waiting periods, annual maximum limits, preauthorization requirements, or deductibles. 

If you do require a specialist, you will be referred to someone by your dentist who will provide a 25% discount for those services.

Select Plan Premium

This plan is also a DHMO and is similar to the Select Plan Basic. That means there are no waiting periods, annual maximum limits, preauthorization requirements, or deductibles.

The biggest difference is that there is no charge at all for routine cleanings, whereas with the basic plan, you have to pay a copay. You still receive additional cleanings if you are diabetic or pregnant.

Elite PPO Premium

Dominion National’s PPO plan offers the most coverage and flexibility of all their available plans in Maryland. Not only is there no charge for routine services such as exams, cleanings, and x-rays, but more extensive services such as fillings, dentures, crowns, root canals, periodontal care, and oral surgery are also covered.

There is no waiting period for Class I services, but there is a six-month waiting period for Class II services and a 12-month waiting period for Class III services. Each member has a $50 deductible and $1,500 annual maximum.  

Conclusion

With several options for dental insurance in Maryland, this guide will hopefully help you make the best decision for your dental needs. You just need to determine what your highest priority is, whether that be budget or coverage. 

If your budget doesn’t allow for any insurance right now and you need dental services, our guide about affordable dental care without insurance may be valuable to you.

Make sure that you take advantage of the dental plan you select, receiving routine services if they are covered so that you can take care of your teeth and avoid the need to spend money on more expensive services down the road.

Provider

Type(s) of plan offered

Special features

Delta Dental

PPO, DHMO

Large number of providers in-network

BlueCross BlueShield CareFirst

PPO, DHMO

Great options for varying budgets

Dominion National

PPO, DHMO

DHMO plans offer additional benefits for diabetics and pregnant women

Details correct at time of writing; check with insurer for current and complete policy details

FAQs

Does Medicaid cover dental in Maryland?

Yes, dental services are available to adults between the ages of 21 and 64 who receive full Medicaid and Medicare benefits as of June 1, 2019. For more information about Medicaid benefits, review our resource here.

Which is the best dental insurance plan in Maryland?

How quickly you need services and what type of services you need will determine the best dental insurance in Maryland for you. Each of the providers listed in our guide are reputable providers in Maryland.

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Contributors:
Natalie used to work as a Community Health Worker and Health Insurance Navigator. She continues to follow her passion for connecting people with the healthcare they need by writing informative content about dentistry and medicine.