Supplementary dental insurance for dental fillings: Top tariffs in comparison & test
Dental defects caused by caries are filled with a tooth by the dentist. A variety of different materials are available for tooth fillings. With a few exceptions, the statutory health insurance only covers the costs of dental filling as part of regular care. Since this mostly consists of an outdated amalgam filling, patients have to expect additional payments for high-quality filling materials. On the other hand, dental insurance companies that provide dental treatment in their range of services also reimburse the costs for modern filling materials and inlays.
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What exactly is a "tooth filling"?
If the dentist detects a carious defect on a tooth, he first carefully drills out this defect, cleans the area and disinfects it. The hole created is then sealed with a filling to prevent further damage to the tooth.
A number of different materials are available for this. Which material is used depends on the extent and location of the caries, but also on the wishes of the patient. However, legally insured patients have to pay the additional costs for high-quality and modern filling materials out of their own pockets.
Overview of different types of dental fillings!
Tooth fillings can be divided into two groups. Plastic fillings such as amalgam, composite (plastic) or cement fillings can be shaped and are inserted directly into the hole at the dentist’s. Inlays, on the other hand, consist of hard materials, such as ceramic or gold, are made in a dental laboratory and then glued into the prepared hole.
Plastic fillings made of amalgam or plastic are usually used for smaller defects. Amalgam is easy to process and durable, but is hardly used anymore due to its potentially harmful effects. Composite or plastic fillings are a mixture of plastic and tiny quartz or glass particles. Fillings made from this material are better tolerated and, due to their tooth-like color, can hardly be distinguished from healthy teeth. That is why their costs in the anterior region are borne by the health insurance. However, the durability of both materials is limited to 4 to 10 years.
Ceramic fillings are a more durable but also more expensive alternative. Since it is a very hard material, these fillings have to be made as so-called inlays in a dental laboratory and are therefore more likely to be assigned to dentures. In addition to their long shelf life, inlays are characterized by high aesthetics and very good compatibility.
Due to their lack of strength, glass ionomer cement and compomer fillings are used more as a temporary solution or fillings for milk teeth.
Overview: Dental fillings and their alternatives
The following tables show the advantages and disadvantages of so-called composite fillings (plastic fillings), amalgam fillings and ceramic inlays. In addition, the costs, durability and aesthetics as well as the assumption of costs by the statutory health insurance company are shown.
|benefits||Tooth shades, high biological compatibility, repairs and repairs possible, quick treatment|
|disadvantage||Short shelf life, risk of caries due to shrinkage of the filling and gap formation|
|durability||4 to 8 years|
|aesthetics||Very good results|
|Total cost (for one tooth)||100 – 180 €|
|Fixed grant from the health insurance company (GKV)||Posterior: 20 – 40 € anterior: 100 – 180 €|
|Excess without dental insurance.||Posterior: 80 – 140 € anterior: 0 €|
|Deductible with dental insurance.||0 € (grant 80 – 100 €)|
|benefits||no additional costs, a little longer lasting than plastic fillings, high purchasing stability|
|disadvantage||Not tooth-colored, possibly harmful to health, must be replaced as a whole|
|durability||About 10 years|
|aesthetics||Bad results, only posterior teeth|
|functionality||Mostly good results|
|Total cost (for one tooth)||20-40 €|
|Fixed grant from the health insurance company (GKV)||20-40 €|
|Excess without dental insurance.||0 €|
|Deductible with dental insurance.||0 €|
|benefits||Long shelf life, tooth-colored, high biological compatibility|
|disadvantage||High costs, high treatment costs, tooth is ground, limited durability for crunching|
|durability||About 15 years|
|aesthetics||Very good results|
|functionality||Very good results|
|Total cost (for one tooth)||€ 500|
|Fixed grant from the health insurance company (GKV)||€ 40|
|Excess without dental insurance.||€ 460|
|Deductible with dental insurance.||€ 50 (grant € 450)|
What should a good tariff for dental fillings include??
Because dental fillings are usually accompanied by comparatively small additional payments, private dental insurance is generally not sensible for this reason alone. However, when taking out dental insurance, care should be taken to ensure that the costs of dental fillings are also covered. Conventional tooth fillings fall under the “dental treatment” insurance module, while inlays are often classified under “dentures”. The following aspects should be considered when looking for the right tariff:
- Reimbursement share of costs: The patient will be charged for the costs that exceed the fixed subsidy of the health insurance. The dentist then submits the dentist’s invoice to his dental supplement insurance in order to receive the share agreed in the tariff. Most dental insurance plans provide for a reimbursement rate of 80 to 90% of the treatment costs. In the case of dental fillings, many insurance companies even provide 100% reimbursement.
- Power limitations: As a rule, all tariffs provide for limits on the amount reimbursed at the beginning of the insurance period. The reimbursable amount increases from year to year until the limitation disappears completely from the 4th or 5th year. Although the cost of tooth fillings should seldom reach the specified sum limits, it is advisable to pay a reimbursement sum of 3000 to 4000 euros in the first 4 years.
- Waiting period: Many insurers require a waiting period of 8 months after taking out dental insurance. No insurance benefits will be paid in this period. Since tooth fillings are often unexpectedly necessary due to tooth decay, it is worth choosing a tariff that does not include a waiting period and pays from the first day of insurance.
- Refund of inlays: Inlays are a particularly high-quality but expensive form of tooth filling. Accordingly, when taking out dental insurance, care should be taken to ensure that it is included in the scope of the insurance and is not subject to any restrictions.
- Dental prophylaxis: The best way to prevent dental fillings from being necessary in the first place is effective dental care. In addition to personal dental hygiene and annual check-ups at the dentist, professional dental cleaning every six months is also of great importance here. As a result, dental insurance should at least share the costs of professional tooth cleaning.
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