By Rachael Green, Benzinga
The CDC estimates that 24% of the nations population or 98 million adults will be 65 or older by 2060. One in five of those older adults will lose all of their teeth. Among the rest, about 68% will have gum disease and 20% will have untreated tooth decay. One of the main barriers is the high cost of dental care, especially for those without insurance.
When someone reaches retirement, that often means transitioning out of their employer-sponsored health plan and onto Medicare which doesnt cover regular dental care. As a result, just 24% of seniors have dental insurance, compared to 54% of working adults.
If they enroll in a Medicare Advantage Plan or meet their states eligibility requirements for Medicaid, they may be able to add some dental coverage. But even then the average annual limit is $1,300 and more than half of those who do have dental benefits have an annual maximum of $1,000 or less. Once that limit is reached, beneficiaries have to pay for the rest of their dental care out of pocket. Just one restorative treatment could max out your coverage, leaving you without coverage when you need to see the dentist next, until your plan resets.
With so many retirees living on a fixed income, those out-of-pocket costs can pose a high enough burden that many people avoid or delay the care they need.
Dental Savings Plans Help Lower The Barriers To Better Oral Health
Dental savings plans are an increasingly popular alternative or supplement to dental insurance. These plans work like a membership program where plan members pay a low annual fee to gain access to members-only discounts at any of the 140,000 participating dentists nationwide. Plan members report an average saving of 50%* on their dental care, and plans activate within one to three business days of signing up. Once activated, plan members can enjoy the discounted rates on virtually any procedure with no annual limit or restrictions based on current health conditions.
For those with dental insurance through Medicare Advantage or other, a dental savings plan can help lower the out-of-pocket costs once they reach their annual limit by providing discounts on future procedures after you hit your maximum. For those with no insurance at all, a dental savings plan can make preventive, restorative and even emergency dental care affordable, even on a tight budget. To learn more about dental savings plans and see how much you can save, visit DentalPlans.com. Their online tools and resources make it quick and simple to compare plans and get a personalized plan recommendation in minutes.
*Discount Health Program consumer & provider surveys indicate average savings of 50%. Sample savings are based on zip code 43614, actual savings may vary by provider, location, and plan.
DentalPlans.com, founded in 1999, is a leading online marketplace for dental savings plans in the U.S., helping more than a million people to affordably access quality healthcare services. Our mission is to empower consumers with the tools, information, and services that they need to live happier, healthier lives.
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