The world of healthcare is as treacherous as it is dangerous. Insurance providers control what you can and can’t get treated and even the best cures can result in some annoying side effects. One of the trickiest parts of healthcare is insurance and insurance coverage. How do you know what’s covered and what’s not?
If you don’t know, here are the top three medical procedures insurance is least likely to cover.
Orthodontists most often work with children and teens, however, adults make up one in five patients. Braces are often sued to correct misaligned teeth, jaw problems, and a misaligned bite. They can also help correct teeth for a nicer, straighter smile which is often better for confidence and dental health.
Braces are one the most expensive dental procedures, especially if you want more discreet ceramic options or lingual braces that go behind the teeth. Without insurance, the cost can exceed $4,000. This hasn’t stopped some four million Americans from wearing braces, according to the American Association of Orthodontists, but it is a pretty penny.
Insurance may cover some of the cost of braces if it’s for a medical reason, such as to correct your bite or align your jaw. However, if you want them purely to get a nicer smile, it can be categorized as a cosmetic procedure and denied by your insurance.
Hair Loss Treatments
Most of the time, hair loss can be attributed to age, genetics, and other issues like ringworm or repeated traction. In fact, more than 35 million American men suffer from hereditary hair loss as they age. Hair loss can also occur as a side effect of chemotherapy, as well as drugs used to treat arthritis, depression, blood pressure, and more. It can also be caused by an immune disorder known as alopecia areata or a hair-pulling disorder called trichotillomania.
There are, however, many over the counter treatments you can purchase to help slow the effects of male or female pattern baldness. There also many cosmetic procedures that could be used to treat hair loss. The final step may be to purchase a toupe or wig if the hair loss continues. Wigs can be made of real or artificial hair that can be made from polyethylene or polythene, around 80 million tons of which is produced globally in a year.
Insurance coverage for hair loss treatments often depends on the cause. If it’s caused by a medical issue such as chemo or radiation therapy, Alopecia, or another issue, then it’s possible that your insurance will cover medications to treat hair loss or even a wig if need be. However, insurance will not likely treatment for hereditary hair loss.
Having a baby is one of the greatest things people can do and it’s heartbreaking when this doesn’t work out. Infertility treatments are often thought of as just IVF, or in vitro fertilization. This is the process of combining egg and sperm in lab to create viable embryos. However, potential parents have other options such as surrogacy, intrauterine insemination, and assisted reproductive technologies.
Surrogacy is probably the most expensive treatment option for infertility, however, one of the best options for LGBTQ+ couples looking to have children. A surrogate may or may not be related to the embryo they are gestating. Often, an agreement is made between the couple and the surrogate to protect both parties and prevent custody issues.
Unfortunately, insurance doesn’t cover such treatments most of the time. Only 16 states have requirements for infertility benefits. In states without requirements, it up to the individual companies to decide what is covered. IVF and IUI are expensive, but not medically necessary procedures so they often not covered by insurance companies.
So if you’re considering braces for yourself, hair loss treatments for your husband, and infertility treatments for you both, look at your insurance coverage carefully. These treatments are often not fully or not covered at all by insurance companies. If you truly need one of these treatments for medical reasons, call your insurance company and discuss your options today.