Most dental insurance plans have a maximum dollar amount they will pay per calendar year. The maximum insurance payout can range from several hundred to several thousand dollars. As December 31 approaches, dental patients should be certain they do not have unused insurance benefits, which do not roll-over into the new year.

In addition to checking to be sure you’re using all your benefits, there are other reasons to seek dental care before the end of the year.

  • Deductible

    On January 1, insurance plans reset your deductible, which is your out-of-pocket expenditure before insurance begins contributing. You probably paid your deductible early in the year, so it can be a real savings to get dental work done now before a new deductible starts.

  • Premiums

    You pay for dental insurance, and one should always hope to get what one’s paid for. Even if you just go in for a cleaning, take advantage of all the benefits your insurance has to offer and for which you pay every month.

  • Flexible Spending Accounts

    Many employers offer Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) to which employees contribute pre-taxed income for medical or dental expenses in a calendar year. FSA contributions not used by December 31 are lost, so it’s important to have a zero-balance in your account prior to January 1.

As the end of 2016 draws near, you’ll want to be certain you’re getting all you can from your dental insurance. Call your insurer and ask how much money remains before you reach the maximum annual payout. If you have an FSA where you work, get your account balance from your company’s benefits administrator. You’ll want to use everything you’ve contributed.

Taking these steps in November still leaves time to ensure you’re making the most of your personal investment. Plus, a visit to the dentist now will have you looking and feeling your best for the holidays, and you can’t put a price on that.