4 min read
What comes to your mind when we say winters? After the cold, snow, sweaters, you are sure to land on Christmas, the fairy lights, the decked-out tree, and oh oh! The gifts. So, while there’s a lot that promises to freeze us over in the winters, there is plenty to keep us warm as well.
Speaking of holidays, this is the time of the year when most of the people are full of anticipation and excitement. We get to fly to our homes- from wherever in the world we are- and sit together around a table, holding hands, giving thanks, and feasting on pies and candy canes.
We don’t mean to spoil the fun, but there’s an unpleasant underbelly to these festivities which only reveals itself after the holidays are up. Yes, we are talking about the holiday feasts and how, since all caution is thrown to the winter winds, our health is adversely affected.
All the sweet treats mean that our teeth are at great risk. Although the feasts are a once-in-a-year event, they set the stage for other unhealthy habits to follow.
Holiday sweets might not be that good for you
You would’ve received plenty of dental lessons in your childhood, so we won’t reiterate them here. Suffice it to say: your teeth are not made to chew through those sweet goodies and continue to shine on after them.
Consequently, it’s not just not your teeth that are affected; it’s your pocket, too. While the NHS is known to be free, dental costs are not covered and they can rise quite high, quite unexpectedly without a comprehensive insurance policy.
The cost of NHS dental care
Under the NHS, there are 3 charge-bands*. They are as below for the period between April 2019 and March 2020:
- Band 1: £22.70
What’s covered: examination, diagnosis, and advice. If necessary, X-rays, a scale and polish, plus further treatment planning are also included.
- Band 2: £62.10
What’s covered: all treatment in Band 1 and additional treatment like extractions, fillings, and root canal treatment.
- Band 3: £269.30
What’s covered: all treatments included in Band 1 and 2, plus more complex procedures like crowns, dentures, and bridges.
If you need additional dental work within two months of treatment in the same or lower band, it is free. After the two months are completed, any dental work will require additional payment. This can slowly and steadily build up to a larger amount. For a higher band, though, another payment will always be needed.
In addition to all the holiday shopping and travelling, these costs can seem like too much too soon, right?
Insurance to the rescue
If you thought insurance companies covered only cars, homes, travel, and critical illnesses like strokes or heart attacks- think again.
Insurers in the UK generally offer two kinds of dental cover: NHS plans and fully private plans.
- NHS plans cover the full treatment cost but they have to be at an NHS clinic. These cost less than fully private plans.
- Private cover pays for a percentage of private treatment- 50% to 55% mostly. The rest has to be borne by the insured. Private dental plans act as a safety net should the NHS dentist feel the need to refer you to a private dentist whose charges are considerably higher.
Apart from these, full-fledged health insurance policies with dental add-ons can also be purchased. Couple-specific plans and family plans are also available where children under 18 are covered for free.
Thus, the cost of dental insurance policies will vary according to personal factors like age as well as the type and amount of coverage one needs. Rates of private dental insurance plans as offered by top dental insurance providers can be found online**.
How insurers can make it easy to purchase dental claims?
Technology and automation are the answer to spreading awareness and streamlining complicated processes- both in-house and for the customer as well.
Using the Spixii solutions, claim handling for a large (possibly infinite) number of people can be done. This would quicken the process since human resources have their limits. Measured through the Net Promoter Score, customer satisfaction is also a happy by-product of this. 93% of customers make repeat purchases from the same company***.
Small claims can be automated to be processed through Spixii's solutions. Customers can also be allowed to log in claims 24*7 which can reduce the average claim settlement time by up to 70%. Customers do not like to repeat themselves and 33% have reported that having to do this made them feel the most frustrated****.
In view of all of the above, dental insurance can actually be a cheaper alternative than paying separately for each treatment. It also allows the policyholder to spread out the payments over a number of months rather than feeling pressured by a large, one-off payment.
Insurers and brokers can take appropriate measures and incorporate tools to spread this awareness among the masses. Educating the customer and then trusting them to make the right choice not only leaves them feeling empowered but also makes them trust the insurance provider. Spixii distribution solutions can help providers to reach this goal. Further information can be found here and through our infobot.
Cover image from Pexels