Pros / Ameritas rewards good oral wellness by rolling over a portion of your unused coverage to the next year.
Cons / Average savings for families only needing standard care is generally less than those of other companies.
Verdict / Ameritas is a good insurance for individuals, particularly those who usually have healthy teeth, but its family plans aren't as cost-effective as those of other dental insurance companies.
Ameritas provides dental insurance for individuals and employers. Its plans vary quite a bit, but are more advantageous for individuals and for people who take good care of their teeth.
Determining average savings is tricky business, because prices of dental plans can vary depending on your area and pre-existing conditions. Smokers, for example, may have higher premiums. However, taking an average of several zip codes and using a single non-smoker, we found that if you have a plan that allows for two check-up-and-cleaning visits, you can save about 23% over having to pay for these services on your own in cash. That's right in the median for savings by the top ten companies we reviewed. Further, when you add dependents onto your plan, the average savings drops even further. Keep in mind that this is considering normal annual maintenance only. If something else happens, you may find the insurance pays off, after all. However, we did find that root canals in particular are only lightly covered, with half to all of the expense falling on you, depending on the plan you purchase.
This dental insurance company has some features that financially benefit people who take good care of their teeth. First, if you practice good dental hygiene and don't need cleanings every six months – or if you know you won't make it to the dentist that often – you can find a cheaper plan that allows only one check-up and cleaning a year. Another advantage is the Dental Rewards program. If you have a good year with your teeth and don't need all of Ameritas' coverage, it rolls over some of the dollars you didn't use to the next year. Thus, if you had a healthy year this year, but next year need a root canal or some other expensive procedure, you may find Ameritas covers more of the costs than usual.
The service has over 84,000 dentists in its network; which is one of the smallest we reviewed. However, you can search on the Ameritas website for network dentists in your area and compare costs online.
In some cases, you may have to wait if you want dental work done aside from standard cleanings. Most have a waiting period of 6 months, but Ameritas' varies from no wait to up to a year. If you are purchasing insurance now because you have a cavity or impacted wisdom teeth, you need to check the plans carefully or you might have to pay out of pocket or suffer through months before your insurance pays for the procedure.
Ameritas is one of the top dental insurance companies for individuals who don't have employer-provided plans. It doesn't always have the best overall savings compared to paying yourself if you only need standard maintenance, but it does reward you in those cases by rolling over some of your coverage so that if you are not as lucky the next year, it may pay for more of your care.