The 5 Best Dental Insurance Providers of 2020

Take Care of Your Smile

We publish unbiased reviews; our opinions are our own and are not influenced by payments from advertisers. Learn about our independent review process and partners in our advertiser disclosure.

You cannot put a price on a beautiful smile. But, if the choice is right for you, you may want to look into finding a comprehensive dental insurance plan at a reasonable rate. If so, you can find a plan individually, or your employer may pay for all or part of its employees' dental coverage as part of its benefits package. For either option, it is important to consider your specific needs. Here are some of the best options for dental insurance on the market.

Best Dental Insurance Providers of 2020

Best for Family Plans: UnitedHealthOne Dental Insurance

United Healthcare
Courtesy of United Healthcare

Dental coverage through UnitedHealthOne is available in both individual and employer plans.

Golden Rule Insurance Company, which underwrites many of UnitedHealthOne's individual insurance products, is rated "A (Excellent)" from A.M. Best, and its rating indicates the financial strength and stability of UnitedHealthOne's products.

The six dental plans listed below are available with the noted benefits:

  • Dental Primary: $50 per person deductible for basic services when using a network provider. $25 copay for preventive care. Thirty percent for basic services after a deductible. Major services not covered. $1,000 annual maximum per person for coverage amount.
  • Dental Primary Preferred: $50 per person deductible for basic services and $50 per person deductible for major services when using a network provider. $25 copay for preventive care. Thirty percent for basic services after deductible. 50 percent for major services after deductible. $1,000 annual maximum per person for coverage amount.
  • Dental Essential: $50 per person deductible for basic services when using a network provider. $0 copay for preventive care. 30% for basic services after deductible. Major services not covered. $1,000 annual maximum per person for coverage amount.
  • Dental Essential Preferred: $50 per person deductible for basic services and $50 per person deductible for major services when using a network provider. $0 copay for preventive care. 30% for basic services after deductible. 50% for major services after deductible. $1,000 annual maximum per person for coverage amount.
  • Dental Premier Choice: $50 combined per person deductible for basic and major services with a network provider. $0 copay for preventive care. 20% for basic services after deductible. 50 percent for major services after deductible. $1,200 annual maximum per person for coverage amount in Year 1; $1,300 for Year 2; $1,400 for Year 3; and $1,500 for Year 4 and beyond.
  • Dental Premier Elite: $50 combined per person deductible for basic and major services with a non-network provider. $0 copay for preventive care. 20% for basic services after deductible. 50 percent for major services after deductible. $1,200 annual maximum per person for coverage amount in Year 1; $1,300 for Year 2; $1,400 for Year 3; and $1,500 for Year 4 and beyond.

Best for Families on a Budget: Delta Dental Insurance

Delta Dental Insurance
 Courtesy of Delta Dental Insurance

Delta Dental is the largest provider of dental benefits in the United States and has a network of over 150,000 practicing dentists and over 330,000 locations.

Delta Dental has an "A (Excellent)" rating from A.M. Best, which affirmed the financial strength rating and the issuer credit ratings for the company.

Delta Dental offers individual and group plans as well as plans through the Health Care Exchange (Marketplace). 

Delta Dental offers plans designed to help families on a budget.

The following is an overview of two Delta Dental insurance plans:

  • DeltaCare USA: This is a prepaid plan that has, among other benefits, no deductible or annual dollar maximums; no copayments or low copayments for most diagnostic and preventive services; coverage for more than 250 procedures, including additional cleanings, bleaching, and tooth whitening; and no exclusions for pre-existing conditions or missing teeth. As an enrollee, you would need to choose a primary care dentist from the preferred provider network.
  • Delta Dental PPO: This is the company's preferred-provider option program. Enrollees have access to a network of dentists who accept reduced fees for covered services. Covered services are paid based on a percentage of the dentist's fee. For instance, if filings are covered at 80%, enrollees pay the remaining 20% of the cost. Enrollees may be responsible for a deductible, as well as charges for non-covered services and amounts over the annual maximum. 

Best for Discounts: Humana Dental Insurance

Humana
Courtesy of Humana

As one of the largest dental insurers in the United States, Humana offers dental insurance plans for individuals and groups. According to the company's website, enrollees may save 20% to 60% depending on their plan, when they get dental services from a dentist in a dental network. Humana also offers a $35 discount to enrollees who combine dental and vision coverage.

The dental plans listed below are available with the noted benefits:

  • Dental Loyalty Plus: Ability to choose any network or non-network dentist. Full coverage of preventive services. 40% coverage in first year, 55% in second year, and 70% in third year and beyond for basic services. 20% coverage in first year, 30% in second year, and 50% in third year and beyond for major services. One-time deductible. No waiting period. $1,000 annual benefit maximum in first year, $1,250 in second year, and $1,500 in third year and beyond.
  • Dental Value: Full coverage of preventive services. Set fee schedule for basic and major services. No deductibles. No waiting period. No maximum benefit limit.
  • Dental Preventive Plus: Full coverage with in-network providers for preventive services. 50% coverage with in-network providers (after deductible) for basic services. No copays. Discounted fees with in-network provider for major services. Low annual deductible. No waiting period.
  • Dental Savings Plus: 20% to 40% coverage for preventive services. Discounted fees with in-network provider for basic and major services. No copays. No deductibles. No waiting period. No limit on the number of services that can be used each year. Discounts for orthodontics up to 20%. Discounts for prescriptions averaging 37%.
  • Complete Dental: 100% coverage after deductible (some limits apply) for preventive services. 80% coverage after deductible (some limits apply) for basic services. 50% coverage after deductible (some limits apply) for major services. No waiting period for preventive care and other waiting period for basic and major services waived with proof of prior dental insurance.

Best for Global Coverage: Cigna Dental Insurance

Cigna
Courtesy of Cigna

Cigna offers three different dental plan options through its network of more than 90,000 dentists.

Cigna has an "A (Excellent)" rating from A.M. Best, which affirmed the financial strength rating and the issuer credit ratings for the company.

If you often travel abroad, Cigna’s coverage is global, so you will have to go without dental care while you are away from home.

The following are Cigna Dental's individual insurance plans:

  • Cigna Dental 1500: $0 for in-network preventive services. Up to $1,500 covered per year (after deductible and coinsurance) for restorative services. $50 deductible for individuals and $150 deductible for families. Up to $1,000 covered for orthodontia.
  • Cigna Dental 1000: $0 for in-network preventive services. Up to $1,000 covered per year (after deductible and coinsurance) for restorative services. $50 deductible for individuals and $150 deductible for families. No coverage for orthodontia.
  • Cigna Dental Preventive: $0 for in-network preventive services. No coverage for restorative services. No deductibles for individuals or for families. No coverage for orthodontia.

Best for Rewards Programs: Ameritas Dental Insurance

Ameritas
Courtesy of Ameritas

Ameritas is well known in the insurance industry as a top provider of dental insurance.

The company has an “A (Excellent)" rating with A.M. Best and an “A+ (Strong)” rating with Standard & Poor's.

Ameritas also offers a "Dental Rewards" program, whereby enrollees can increase their annual maximum benefit to help pay for more expensive procedures in the future by visiting a dental provider each year and submitting a claim. The enrollee must stay or at below the dental plan's annual benefit threshold of $500 for total claims paid during the year. Over time, the enrollee can earn up to the maximum reward accumulation of $2,000 and can earn a $100 dental network bonus for each year he or she visits an Ameritas network provider for dental care. 

Here are some features that come standard with all Ameritas dental plans:

  • Preventive services are 100% covered with new network providers. Network providers charge 25% to 50% less than their regular rates.
  • Enrollees can visit any dentists who are out of network.
  • All plans include the "Dental Rewards" program.
  • Enrollees can save on prescriptions at over 60,000 participating network pharmacies.

What Does Dental Insurance Cover?

Dental insurance typically covers teeth cleanings, preventative care, crowns, and fillings. Some dental insurance also covers a portion of orthodontics, periodontics, and prosthodontics. Dental insurance typically does not cover cosmetic dental procedures or teeth whitening. 

How Much Does Dental Insurance Cost?

If your employer offers dental insurance coverage as part of their benefits package, it’s generally cheaper than purchasing it on your own. Like health insurance, you pay a monthly premium and need to meet a deductible before the insurance provider pays for your services. 

Deductibles may be as low as $50, but the amount of services covered per year may have a cap, such as $1,000 or $1,500. Also, you may be required to stay within a network or risk paying more for out-of-network providers.

Is Dental Insurance Worth the Cost?

Dental insurance usually covers only a portion of the procedures and preventative care you require. For annual checkups and cleanings and nothing more, you may be better off paying out of pocket. However, as with health insurance, your savings can be substantial if you need an unexpected procedure such as a root canal. 

How We Chose the Best Dental Insurance Providers

We chose these dental insurance providers based on the types of plans they offer and their financial strength ratings, costs, benefits, and discounts offered.

Article Sources

The Balance requires writers to use primary sources to support their work. These include white papers, government data, original reporting, and interviews with industry experts. We also reference original research from other reputable publishers where appropriate. You can learn more about the standards we follow in producing accurate, unbiased content in our editorial policy .
  1. UnitedHealthOne. "Dental Insurance." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  2. UnitedHealthOne. "Our Company." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  3. UnitedHealthOne. "Dental Plans for Individuals and Families With Optional Vision Benefits," Pages 4-5. Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  4. Delta Dental. "Individual and Family Dental Plans." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  5. Delta Dental. "'A' (Excellent) Ratings Affirmed by A.M. Best." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  6. Delta Dental. "Health Care Exchange (Marketplace) for Individuals." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  7. Delta Dental. "How to Choose a Dental Insurance Plan." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  8. Delta Dental. "DeltaCare USA." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  9. Delta Dental. "Dental Insurance." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  10. Delta Dental. "Dental Dental PPO Plan Highlights." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  11. Humana. "Individual and Family Dental Insurance." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  12. Humana. "Take Advantage of Valuable Extras." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  13. Humana. "Getting the Most From Full-Coverage Dental Insurance." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  14. Humana. "Humana Dental Loyalty Plus Plan." Accessed Jan 24, 2020.

  15. Humana. "Humana Dental Value Plan." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  16. Humana. "Humana Dental Preventive Plus Plan." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  17. Humana. "Humana Dental Savings Plus Plan." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  18. Humana. "Humana Complete Dental Plan." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  19. Cigna. "Dental Insurance Keeps You Smiling." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  20. BusinessWire. "AM Best Affirms Credit Ratings of Cigna Corporation and Its Subsidiaries; Removes From Under Review With Developing Implications and Affirms Credit Ratings of Medco Containment Group Members." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  21. Cigna. "International Dental and Vision Plans." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  22. Independent Health Agents. "Ameritas Dental Insurance Policy Review." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  23. Ameritas. "Ameritas Financial Strength Highlights." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  24. Ameritas. "Dental Rewards." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.

  25. Ameritas. "Keep Your Provider." Accessed Jan. 24, 2020.