Should You Supplement Your Health Insurance with a Dental and Vision Plan?
As physical signs of aging begin to appear, it is easy to focus on the big picture concerns. Am I eating healthy enough to stave off heart disease? Do I get the proper amount of daily activity to prevent immobility? Am I at risk for Alzheimer’s Disease? Those big looming health questions always seem to be right around the corner. But when we are so focused on the big picture, it is hard to see the details.
While regular checkups with a physician or geriatric doctor are important to ensure your overall health as you age, you should also maintain steady visits to your dentist and eye doctor as well. Leaving a gap in your healthcare plan will inevitably lead to higher out-of-pocket costs as dental and vision concerns tend to increase with age.
Just like any other bone in your body, your teeth become more susceptible to breakage and deterioration with age. But it is not just the teeth themselves that require attentive care. Your gums and soft tissue are prone to disease as well. As you age, you must be vigilant about your oral hygiene routine as a part of your overall health. Because we use our mouths as an entryway for the nutrition that sustains our bodies, it is important to remember that your teeth are key to more than just a pretty smile in the family photo.
Why is Dental Insurance Important for Seniors?
Oral care can be a costly service and you won’t be able to get out of paying the bill by flashing your pretty pearly whites. Preventative checkups and dental care may seem like a minor cost that you can postpone until you see signs of deterioration. But oral surgery is an expensive and daunting endeavor that often requires a waiting period for treatment after purchasing an insurance plan. And even if your dental health has always been top notch, new ailments like osteoporosis, diabetes, heart disease, stroke or respiratory disease can affect your dental health as you age. Because dental insurance isn’t typically included in many health insurance policies, it is important to seek out a policy and discus your best options with an insurance professional.
Aging Eye Care
Eyes may be the window to the soul, but they also offer a glimpse into your overall health. Just as you shouldn’t skip out on regular medical checkups, you shouldn’t skip out on your vision exams as well. An eye doctor can help you diagnose or prevent far more than just a new prescription for your glasses. Early diagnosis of eye problems can help prevent vision loss down the line. In fact, most vision problems in the United States today are avoidable or even curable. Diabetes, carotid artery blockages, hypertension and high cholesterol are often first detected through an eye exam as well, so the implications go beyond just seeing your grandchildren perform on stage at their school play.
Why is Vision Insurance Important for Seniors?
As you age, you become more susceptible to chronic eye disorders such as glaucoma, cataracts and macular degeneration. Without insurance, these could prove to be costly conditions that you cannot simply sweep under the rug. Typically, you can choose to enroll in a vision benefits package or a discount vision plan depending on your needs and finances. Discuss the terms of the specific plan you are considering with an insurance professional. Like most insurance coverage, only certain eye doctors may be covered under your chosen plan so be sure you understand the fine print before you have an unpleasant surprise when you arrive at your eye doctor’s office of 20 years to find that they do not accept your new plan.