With age comes a higher risk of dental issues and tooth loss. Teeth that have been filled in the past become very weak and need some attention. The older you get, the more you should keep up with your oral health. However, a large portion of the elderly does not get the care they need. This is because they may not have insurance and the procedures they need are not covered by their government aid. The elderly are not the only ones who may miss out on much needed dental work.
Younger generations also find themselves in a situation where a dentist (more about dentistry) is out of reach because of the lack of dental insurance or the inability to afford it. So, what options do you have if you find yourself in dire need of the assistance of a dentist?
Purchase it A’ la Carte
Though dental insurance is not included for adults in the ACA, each state offers dental insurance separately as long as you purchase your medical plan through the Affordable Care Act. (learn about our policies)
Look into Club Membership Perks
Certain groups or clubs sell members with affordable dental insurance. Older individuals can consider AARP and veterans can find help through Veteran’s associations. Places like Costco offer insurance options for their members at the executive level.
Make Some Calls
There are some dentists out there that will work with you. Make some calls and see if an office is willing to work out a payment plan with you. Some are willing to do this for you. Others offer a plan that requires a small annual fee that covers x-rays, a couple of cleanings, and discounts on other procedures. This cuts out the insurance companies and saves you a lot of money. Plus, everything is covered and you do not need to worry about co-pays.
Often a group of dentists will band together for a charity event that offers discounted or free services for a day to help out the community.
Similar to beauty students, dental students need to practice their art. Many dental schools offer reduced priced procedures that are done by students who are supervised by a licensed dentist. They get experience and you get some much needed dental work.
Even if you find yourself in a situation where you need the assistance of a dentist but have no insurance, there are options for you out there. In the meantime, take good care of your oral hygiene so that you can minimize visits.
Next Up: How to choose the right dentist.