According to the Center for Disease Control, nearly 45 million Americans do not have dental insurance coverage, whereas the Health Resources and Services Administration estimates 108 million have no dental insurance. Most people over the age of 50 don't have dental insurance because they're retired, work part time, or are self-employed. Even those who carry dental insurance find that it's not very helpful with the truly necessary procedures. A $1,000 annual coverage maximum isn't going to do much to assist with a dental implant, for example, a procedure that can easily cost several thousand dollars.
People still need dental care beyond the limitations of what dental insurance offers, and they are finding a variety of ways to obtain it within their financial means. Here are just a few ways people obtain and pay for dental care when they don't carry insurance.
- Credit Cards – As long as the interest rate is low enough, credit cards can be an effective way to pay for dental care. If credit card companies raise their rates, some card carriers simply transfer the balance to a card with a lower rate until they can pay down the balance.
- Healthcare Credit Cards – Recently, a number of credit cards have emerged that are specifically designed for medical and dental expenses. While they can be helpful in a pinch, they tend to carry double-digit interest rates, and if the balance isn't paid off in a specified amount of time, the fees are quite hefty.
- Dental Schools – Some people use their teeth to train the next generation and get some pretty low-cost care. Dental students need hands-on training in order to become full-fledged dentists, and a number of uninsured Americans are glad to contribute to the educational process.
- Dental Charities – With so many lacking dental insurance, there are dentists, hygienists, and oral surgeons who volunteer their time and expertise to charitable organizations to help those most in need.
- Payment Plans – Many dentists, Dr. Chirillo included, offer reasonable payment plans for their patients, or they work with third-party finance companies through which patients can make payments. Obviously, the big advantage of working directly with your dentist is that dentists, compared to insurance companies, have a much better idea of what your mouth actually needs. Your dentist will ensure you get the care necessary, not just the care an insurance company thinks is worth paying for. Especially with elective and cosmetic surgery, dental insurance policies are largely unviable.
At Dr. Chirillo's office, our primary objective is to give our patients the best in oral healthcare. If you do not have dental benefits or if they are not adequate, and if you prefer making decisions, call us today and ask us about our financing options. We're here to help you take control of your dental care and wellbeing. >>Contact Us