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Dental Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) FAQs

General/administration questions

I did not get an ID card. How will my dentist know I have coverage through Aetna Dental? 
Aetna Dental members do not need a member ID card to get dental care. When you go to the dentist, tell the office staff that you have Aetna Dental and they will verify your coverage.

You can view or print an ID card on your secure member website. Signing up is simple and free. With our mobile app you can access your account from your phone. 

Log in or register for a secure member account

Learn more about our mobile app

I'm enrolled in more than one dental plan. How does coverage work with two plans?
If your plan has a coordination of benefits provision, we confirm which plan has primary responsibility for claim payment. If we have primary responsibility, we pay as the primary payor. If not, we pay as the secondary payor.

The primary payor pays claims as it normally would, as if there were no secondary payor. The secondary plan acts like a supplement to the primary plan.

If you are enrolled in two dental plans, and each plan covers two cleanings per year, you are not entitled to four cleanings per year.

Please note that there are several types of coordination of benefits provisions. They may differ by plan. If you need more information, please contact Member Services using the number on your ID card. 

Do I need a referral to see a specialist?

Network Questions

How do I find a dentist? 
You can find a network dentist using our online directory. For personalized results, first log in to your secure member website. Search for a dentist by name, specialty, zip code or the number of miles you are willing to travel. 

Log in to find a dentist who accepts your coverage

Find a dentist using our public site

How will my claims be reimbursed?

Network Dentists

Network dentists have agreed to offer certain services at a negotiated rate. If you visit a network dentist, you generally pay less out of pocket. 

  • If your plan has a deductible (a dollar amount you must pay for covered expenses in a plan year), you must meet the deductible before your plan covers your eligible dental expenses. 
  • After you meet your deductible, you will pay a coinsurance amount (a percentage of covered expenses) at the time of service. See your plan documents to learn this amount. 
  • Your dentist may submit your claims for you.

  • Out-of-network dentists

Dentists who are not in our network may bill you their normal fee for procedures. Your plan provides benefits using amounts that we have set as the "recognized charge" for each service in your geographic area. When we set the "recognized charge" we may consider other factors, including the prevailing charge in other areas. The amount of our "recognized charge" does not suggest your dentist’s fee is not reasonable and proper.

Your dentist may bill you for the difference between his or her normal fee and our "recognized charge." This amount is not covered, and you must pay it.

  • Your plan may have a deductible. The deductible is the dollar amount you must pay before your plan covers your eligible dental expenses.
  • You may pay a coinsurance percentage or flat dollar amount. That means you’ll pay a portion of covered expenses at the time of service. See your plan documents for specific amounts.
  • You or your dentist can submit a claim form for reimbursement.

If you are enrolled in a PPO Max plan, your out-of-network benefits will be based on the standard rates for network dentists in that geographic area. Please see your plan document or contact Member Services for details.

Plan Design

Which dental services are covered?
Your Aetna Summary of Benefits describes the services that are covered under your plan. You can get a Summary of Benefits from the employer that is providing your insurance.

Are composite fillings (white fillings) covered?
Yes, but some plans may limit the benefit to certain teeth. Contact Member Services if you have questions.

Are there any restrictions in replacing my missing teeth?
If the teeth were lost or extracted before your coverage began, then services to replace them may not be covered by your plan. This applies to first-time dentures, fixed or removable bridges, and implants. For more details, contact Member Services or review your plan documents.

How often will my plan pay to replace crowns, bridges and other devices? 
Please see your plan documents or contact Member Services for coverage details.

Are there any restrictions on how often a service can be performed? 
Yes. Some services have this type of restriction. Please see your plan documents or contact Member Services for details.

Which orthodontia treatments are covered?

See our Orthodontia FAQs

What will my Aetna plan cover if a service started before my effective date, but finishes after my Aetna coverage began?  
If you were covered under a previous insurance carrier, certain services will be covered by that plan even after your Aetna coverage begins. This is called an extension of benefits provision. These services include:

  • Crowns and fixed bridgework, when the teeth were prepared before your Aetna coverage began 
  • Appliances (such as dentures), when the impression was taken before your Aetna coverage began
  • Root canal therapy, when the tooth's pulp chamber was opened before your Aetna coverage began

If you had no coverage when you started treatment for a service, that service may not be covered under your Aetna plan. Contact Member Services to see if your plan has a work-in-progress exclusion.

If more than one service is needed to fix a problem, most services are considered separately.

How will I know if the treatment I need will be covered? 
Have your dentist send a request for a pretreatment estimate (predetermination) to us. This will let you and the dentist know what the benefit would be if the service were done. You or your dentist may also call Member Services at the number on your ID card.

How will oral surgery be covered by my dental plan? 

See our FAQs about oral surgery
When is periodontal maintenance covered? 
Periodontal maintenance is for patients who have previously been treated for periodontal disease.

Page last reviewed January 5, 2016


Texas Members: In Texas, the Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) plan is known as the Participating Dental Network (PDN).  

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