Get the best dental care, even after retirement.
Retirement is an exciting milestone. No matter how much you love your job, it’s exciting to gain more time to spend with family and friends and invest in yourself and activities you enjoy. You’ll have more time than ever to catch up on your reading list, rediscover your love of painting, and maybe even travel! As you near retirement, you’re likely starting to think about different areas of life that need to be planned out to ensure everything goes as smoothly as possible.
One of the areas that often gets overlooked is planning for your dental care during retirement. Medicare doesn’t cover dentistry, so it’s important to plan in advance to make sure you have access to the best dental care even once retirement begins—without breaking your budget! We know it can be hard to plan or know where to start, but you don’t have to do it alone! We’ve put together a guide to help you get started.
You can plan for post-retirement care in stages.
It’s important to put a long-term dental care plan in place for your retirement. Just like with any other aspect of your retirement, you want to make sure you’re able to get the best care possible with the least amount of trouble or concern when you need it! Thankfully, you can start thinking about your retirement dental care plan early and in stages, starting about 10 years out. Here’s a breakdown of the major steps you’ll likely want to take during the planning process.
10 Years Before Retirement
When you’re about 10 years out from retirement, it’s a good time to start planning for the future. It’s also a good time to ask your dentist about procedures you may need in the future that you can elect to have now. After all, at this point, you still have dental insurance through your employer, so it’s ideal to do everything you can now. Getting these procedures sooner also allows you to reap the benefits of them longer and potentially saves you money in the long run by taking care of issues before they have time to become bigger, more expensive fixes. Along these lines, it’s important to ensure you’re getting a checkup with Dr. Bentz every six months. This helps prevent any oral health surprises, which also prevents unexpected costs. Saving money is always a plus, but it’s especially important when you’re trying to save up for retirement.
5 Years Before Retirement
Once you reach the five-year mark in your countdown to retirement, you should start putting together a spending plan for your dental care. Do some research to get an idea of what dental care costs, and set aside a specific portion of your retirement savings for dental work to replace your Health Savings Account. Although you don’t have to make any decisions yet, it’s also a good time to start looking into what dental insurance options are out there for retirees, what different plans cover, and how much the type of plans you’re interested in cost. Once you know that, you can add the cost of independent dental insurance into your budget as well if you’re interested in purchasing it.
1 Year Before Retirement
Hitting the one-year mark before retirement is when the countdown really begins! Once you’re a year out, it’s a good idea to use up your Flexible Spending Account. You probably won’t get this money back when you retire, so you’re going to want to get as much benefit from it as possible! Ask Dr. Bentz one last time if there are any dental procedures you can do now while you still have access to your employer’s dental insurance and money sources like an HSA for FSA. It’s also smart to have a conversation with Dr. Bentz about your care after retirement. He might be able to provide some helpful insights and information that you’ve missed in your research. Dentists have a ton of professional insights, after all, so it’s a great idea to take advantage of this!
What financial resources are available for you?
Even without your employer-provided dental insurance, there are plenty of ways to afford your dental care in retirement. Which method is right for you will depend on your budget, lifestyle, and oral and overall health history, but there should be an option out there that works well for you. Aside from dental insurance, most dentists offer payment plans. These plans are incredibly helpful for many people because they allow you to split up the cost of your treatment into more manageable payments that fit into your budget. Most dental offices will also accept credit card payments, which makes it easier to pay off the cost of your treatment in more bite-sized chunks.
Additionally, some dentists offer discounts or membership plans in place of insurance. Like dental insurance, discount plans involve a yearly fee that you’ll typically pay up front. Once you pay this fee, you’ll have access to perks like two free dental checkups a year, a free yearly X-ray, and discounts on a range of other treatments. This helps make regular dental care affordable no matter your budget while also helping to cover the cost of any treatments that do come up after you’ve retired. If you’re unsure what your dentist offers, don’t be afraid to ask! We’re always willing to sit down and discuss what financing options we offer for you and what may work best for your post-retirement plans.
Plan ahead for your dental care.
Retirement is an exciting, enjoyable part of life—and it should also be a healthy one! Planning for your dental care after you’ve retired is an essential part of ensuring that your oral and overall health stay in great shape well after you’ve retired. After all, bad oral health isn’t a natural consequence of getting older! If you have any questions, would like to get started with the planning process, or want to know what procedures you should look into before you retire, feel free to schedule a consultation with Dr. Bentz at any time.