Dealing with Dental Needs When Uninsured

Most of us are going to find ourselves facing the question, someday or sometime. A dental need will arise, and we won’t be covered for the expense. In a time when any form of insurance is becoming harder and harder to acquire but the expectation of insurance is becoming more and more absolute, it is important to consider ahead of time how you are going to deal with your dental care options when you are medically uninsured.

image of a tooth with life ring on

Without medical insurance your costs will either be met out of your own pocket, or your needs will go unmet entirely. If you are young and healthy, with good teeth and a family background of sound dental health, that may seem like an acceptable option. However if you have any negative facts influencing your dental health it may be harder to be so confident.

​Age, gum disease, a family background of tooth damage and tooth loss: all these can combine to leave you trapped with serious health challenges arising out of problems with your dental condition, but no way to pay. So what are your dental care options?

The methods of coping are diverse. Among them are establishing either a private dental insurance plan in spite of your lack of overall medical coverage, or setting up a dental savings plan privately or through your dental care provider.

Dental Health Insurance

  • Cheaper than Dental Savings plans
  • Easy to get
  • Unlikely to pay out full sums

Dental Plans

  • Reduced Costs
  • Safe and Secure
  • Overall better than Insurance

Other Options for the Uninsured

  • Use free clinics - offered reduced rates because staff are all medical students and trainees
  • Over 65? Through veterans benefits, medicare provides some level cover

If you are in doubt what you are eligible to obtain call your dentist first: in many instances your dentist will have the most direct experience with the funding methods open to his clients. It is just sensible to recognize that your dentist deals with issues of patient funding many times daily, as does his staff, where any other worker, public or private, is unlikely to accumulate the same focused body of knowledge. However be prepared to look further on your own once your dentist has provided his best advice.

Finding alternative methods of caring for your dental health even if you are medically uninsured is challenging, but not impossible. Plan ahead, get advice, look into state, federal, and other resources, and know that caring for yourself is vital.


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