Most adults will need dental care at some point in their lives, but many don’t have dental insurance. This forces the majority of adults to go without needed dental care, which poses a hazard for both their oral health and their physical health. However, dental care is expensive, and many can’t afford the out-of-pocket expense. A routine exam and dental cleaning can cost upward of $200. Fillings can cost several hundred dollars. Braces and dentures can cost several thousand dollars, which is out of the question for many adults, particularly those who are retired.
If you need affordable dental care but lack dental insurance, you have alternatives. Read on to learn more about how to get affordable dental treatments that can save your physical health as well as your oral health.
There are several types of dental clinics available to the public at little or no cost, such as:
Since there are so many people who need dental care, many free dental clinics have long waiting lists for service. Others have eligibility requirements, such as disabled people, seniors, or specific medical conditions. These clinics are usually operated by churches, charitable organizations, or professional dental organizations.
There are at least two dental schools or dental hygienist schools in each state. You might have to travel some distance to get there, but they offer clinics that are open to the public. Every student must have a minimum number of hours of hands-on training before they graduate, so this is an excellent source for affordable dental treatments. Each school sets its own rate, but the cost is usually very affordable. Since the students are in training, your treatment may take longer than it would in a dental office, but it will be done correctly. An internet search for the Commission on Dental Accreditation will provide a list of schools in each state.
Public dental clinics are operated by state and local public health departments or by grants from the federal government. Many charge on a sliding scale, which means that you pay according to your income. Services available usually include:
Some clinics may have an on-call emergency dental service. Authority Dental is a non-profit group that lists affordable dental clinics that are operated by health departments or federally funded centers.
Dental Lifeline is available to those 65 and older in every state. Those who are disabled or have severe medical conditions may also qualify, and there’s a separate section for low-income children who need orthodontic treatments. The America’s Dentists Care Foundation provides two-day dental clinics at various locations throughout the state. Although some are open to adults only, others accept children. The website lists locations and dates for upcoming clinics.
Some dentists may donate a few free treatments each year. Especially if you’re a long-time patient but need treatment that you can’t afford, ask your dentist if you might qualify for free or reduced-rate treatment.
Unemployed or underemployed individuals may qualify for the Children’s Health Insurance Program, or CHIP, or the family may qualify for Medicaid. Dental benefits under Medicaid vary by state, but most states have no monthly Medicaid premiums and provide full dental coverage up to age 19. About one-third of the states provide limited dental benefits for adults, and one-third provide extensive dental coverage for adults. Check with your local Medicaid office for more details.
If you live in the Los Angeles area and need high-quality, affordable dental care, then call Southland Dental Care. We’re one of the best in the Los Angeles area for affordable dental care, and it’s also some of the best in the area. We’re conveniently located in Sherman Oaks, and we offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee. If you’re not happy with your procedure – although we know you will be – be sure to let us know. We’ll make it right, we promise. We know that people need dental care at all hours of the day and night, so we’re open Monday through Friday, and Saturda by appointment. Call us to schedule an appointment, or you can conveniently book an appointment online.
If you need dental work but can’t afford it, ask us about the CareCredit program. CareCredit is like a credit card, but you can only use it for health care. You make monthly payments on it just as you would a regular credit card and it’s an excellent way to get the dental work that you need without stressing about how you’ll pay for it.
Whether you need general dentistry, cosmetic dentistry, implants, or orthodontic work, we can help you. If you have a fear of needles or pain or you experience any type of dental phobia, let us know. We offer various sedation dentistry options to all our patients, so don’t avoid the dental treatment you need because of cost or anxiety. Call us today at 818-788-8787 to schedule the dental treatments that you need. We look forward to working with you.