A how-to guide to dental insurance

Why finding the right dental insurance policy is an easy way to save money

4 minute read2021-05-11
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Many people expect their statutory health insurance to pay for their dental bills. However, if you've ever had a crown, bridge or root canal treatment in Germany, you might have had an unwelcome surprise. In many cases, your health insurer will only cover a small portion of your dental bill – leaving you to pay for the rest.

Everything you need to know about dental insurance

With the right dental insurance, you can ensure that your smile gets the care it deserves, while saving money and avoiding unexpectedly high dental bills.

Why should I get dental insurance?

Over time, statutory health insurers (German: Krankenkassen) have drastically reduced their payouts for dental care and treatment. They now only cover your routine checkups, basic care such as removing wisdom teeth, and a small fixed portion of various other treatments. This means that you are responsible for paying the majority of your dental bills yourself. Even if you take good care of your teeth, you never know when you might need some dental work. And by the time a problem has been diagnosed, very few insurers will cover you. Dental insurance is there to fill this gap in your health coverage and protect you from unexpected, expensive dental bills.

How much does dental treatment cost without insurance?

The exact costs vary depending on your dentist, as well as the severity of the issue. In some cases, your dentist may offer you several options, such as different quality of materials for crowns and fillings. These examples can serve as a rough guide:

Professional tooth cleaning (recommended once or twice a year):

Your health insurance pays: €0

You pay: €80–120

Root canal treatment

Your health insurance pays: €300

You pay: up to €700

Ceramic crown

Your health insurance pays: €200

You pay: up to €800

Tooth implant with ceramic crown

Your health insurance pays: €300–400

You pay: €2000–3000

As you can see, quality dental care can be very expensive. If you aren't able to pay for higher quality materials like ceramic, but don't want to make do with plastic or amalgam, it might be a good idea to get additional dental insurance.

What do I need to consider before getting dental insurance?

The vast majority of dental insurance policies include a waiting time: typically three months. This is because dental insurance is meant to protect you against future expenses, and not pay to fix existing problems. Some basic dental services, like professional cleaning, can be available immediately. Many insurers offer a tiered system of coverage, which means the longer you are insured, the higher the maximum payout the insurer will offer you.

There are some policies that offer cover for existing dental issues. However these are much more expensive than ordinary policies and often include a long fixed contract period, so it's often better to get dental insurance while your teeth are healthy.

How do I make a claim?

If your dentist has diagnosed a problem, they should provide you with a treatment and cost plan (German: Heil- und Kostenplan). This is a detailed summary of the dental problem, the recommended treatment and an estimation of the costs involved. First you should share this document with your statutory health insurer. When they have signed off on it, you should then send their confirmation and the treatment and cost plan to your dental insurer.

The Getsafe app simplifies this process for you. All you need to do is submit a scan or photo of the necessary documents and we will let you know how much we will reimburse you for the treatment. Once your treatment is complete, simply submit your bills and we'll reimburse you within two working days.

When does my coverage begin?

With Getsafe Dental insurance, your coverage begins at the earliest the next day after purchase. Remember: there is a standard waiting time of 3 months for most treatments. Treatment that was recommended or started before this time will not be covered.

How you benefit from Getsafe Dental Insurance

Starting from just €9.31 per month, you can get up to 100% coverage for a wide range of dental treatment at a dentist of your choice. No need to settle for cheap fillings or worry about expensive dental bills. And you can make use of your policy straight away with up to €80 cover for professional dental cleaning from day one of your coverage. Your bills are reimbursed within two working days – so you can be good to your teeth without breaking the bank.

    Author: Tom