Tricare Tips

Anyone who has ever depended on Tricare knows that the military’s health care plan can be a wonderful resource for individuals and families — but that same health plan can also present some challenges. 

Dr. Paul Stevens and his wife, Natalie, know a lot about Tricare, the healthcare plan of the armed forces. Dr. Stevens served in the Navy, so Natalie, as a military spouse, has had to learn how to navigate the Tricare system for her family’s healthcare needs. “The providers that accept Tricare are actually quite limited,” Natalie explains. Those limits come both in the form of access and the specialties that the providers offer.

The Stevens have been stationed nationally and internationally, and have had to find new providers for themselves and their children with each move — which has presented some difficulties at times. The couple has a few pieces of advice to anyone looking for those high-quality providers after a PCS:

  1. Visit and search your zip code to get a list of providers who accept Tricare.
  2. Join Facebook groups to discover what people are saying about the providers in your area.
  3. Connect in person with other military families in the area through a spouse’s group or some other social group. Word of mouth is sometimes the best way to navigate finding great providers in your area who accept Tricare.

And the Stevens have one more thing to share about Tricare: Dr. Stevens is a board-certified pediatric dentist with Dakota Dental for Kids. DD4K is proud to accept Tricare and to serve military service members and their families. Specialized care, such as pediatric dentistry, can potentially be difficult to find for people relying on Tricare. But, at least in the Black Hills, parents who have Tricare can depend on DD4K for the specialized treatment involved in pediatric dental care. Discover more at