Everyone at every age needs to take care of their teeth. However, access to affordable dental care may be difficult if not impossible for some. Conventional dental insurance coverage may be offered by an employer, however it is often an optional expense, and many find that a preferred dentist is not a plan participant. Additionally the structure of traditional dental insurance, which is to pay into a plan and to utilize dental services for the cost of a co-pay later, does not mesh well with those on low or fixed incomes, especially the elderly.
For those concerned that they cannot afford dental coverage, there is little comfort in knowing that they are now in the majority. According to the National Association of Dental Plans, during the first quarter of 2013 around 40% of Americans did not have dental insurance. That is alarming, compared against 13% of Americans who did not have health insurance during the same period, according to Gallup.
Reactive Dental Care is Expensive
In the recent Affordable Care Act, dental coverage was largely overlooked. Since far fewer Americans have dental coverage and impaired dental health is known to negatively impact overall health, many are forgoing routine dental maintenance. By taking the reactive stance, that is waiting for a dental issue to arise before seeing the dentist, those who opt to avoid scheduling dental cleanings and checkups, could require costly medical treatment later. According to the 2013 U.S. Survey of Dental Care Affordability and Accessibility, “forgoing care in the short term leads patients to incur much higher long term costs when expensive corrective measures become necessary.” Avoiding dental maintenance treatments and choosing to be reactive has a much greater cost as well. The survey also stated that those who avoid routine dental care are “more likely to develop the major health conditions linked with poor oral health: diabetes, heart disease and stroke.” Clearly there is a need for affordable dental care options for low or fixed income persons.
Affordable Dental Plan Options Offer Significant Savings
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Consumer Price Index, in 2016 New Yorkers are spending 2.7% of their household income on dental care. Since such a small percentage of their income can be allocated to maintaining their dental health, the best solution for those without dental insurance would be an affordable dental care option. To further ease the cost of dental health care, many dental plans allow their members payment options. Members may opt to pay an annual fee or in monthly installments. Also to be aware prior to treatment as to the cost of the procedure. This way, the members and their families would have access to dental care when they require it, and not have funds needed to support themselves and their families pre-invested in a plan they may or may not use as with dental insurance. The option of paying as needed is part of the dental plan concept. While not dental insurance, a dental plan such as EDP Dental Plans allows our members to receive significant discounts (between 15% and 60%) on dental costs, from qualified practitioners who participate in the plan.
For a yearly membership fee, participants may select a discount dental plan for singles, couples or families. The fee may be paid annually or in monthly installments. There are no deductibles, or waiting periods for treatment, nor an age limit. Coverage begins immediately, and the services of specialists including pediatric dentists, periodontists, prosthodontists, maxillofacial surgeons, endodontists, oral surgeons and orthodontists, are discounted as well. EDP provides a Sample Fee Schedule by zip code so members can readily see what they can expect to realize in savings. This is very helpful to those on a fixed income or with limited means.
By presenting this information, EDP Dental Plans illustrates the importance of not foregoing routine dental treatment because of the cost. By avoiding the dentist may at first appear to be a cost-savings, it ultimately only delays the inevitable – compromised health and costly dental bills. EDP Dental Plans offers our members affordable monthly payment options. This way members and their families can see their dentists to closely monitor their oral health, as dental cleanings and checkups are a sure way to preserve overall good health. EDP offers affordable dental plans starting as low as $99 per year, with instant activation. Find a participating dentist today and call 1.800.777.1085 or sign up online for immediate coverage.