Naperville Area News

Date ArticleType
12/10/2019 General
No dental insurance? Protect your oral health with an individual plan.

With the end of the year approaching, you still have a few weeks to schedule a preventive checkup with your dentist and make use of your dental benefits — or consider getting a plan for next year.

Did you know that more than 2 in 5 Americans (44%), or more than 100 million people, lack dental insurance?[1] Don’t be among them. People with dental insurance are 40% more likely than those without coverage to see the dentist each year (77% v. 46%).[2]

Preventive dental care, such as regular cleanings, is the most effective way to protect your oral health. These checkups are usually covered 100% by most dental plans. Regular dental visits help detect and treat oral health issues before they potentially become more time-consuming, comprehensive and costly to treat.

If you don’t have access to a dental plan through your employer, recently came off your parents’ plan or if you’re retired, an individual dental plan may be your best option. Here are three situations in which you may want to consider an individual plan to get the dental care you need at a price you can afford:
You are a retiree.
More than 7 in 10 adults (71%) aged 65 and older lacked dental insurance in 2017.[3] Nearly 60 million Americans rely on Medicare, the federal government program that provides coverage for people 65 and older, for health insurance. But nearly two-thirds of those on Medicare don’t have dental coverage.[4] Traditional Medicare coverage doesn’t offer a dental option unless you buy it through privately run Medicare Advantage plans.[5]
You are self-employed, unemployed or your employer doesn’t offer dental coverage.
Cost is the No. 1 reason Americans don’t get regular dental care. More specifically, Americans say their biggest obstacles to receiving proper dental care are a lack of insurance (32%) or not being able to afford the out-of-pocket costs (47%).[6] Dental insurance is designed to help you manage oral health care expenses in a more predictable way.
You are a college student or recent graduate not eligible under a parent’s plan.
As your life is in transition, don’t let yourself go uninsured. Being without insurance can be much more expensive than having dental coverage, especially if you have an oral health emergency, develop a cavity or need a filling, crown or root canal. In addition, having a dental plan can motivate you to get the preventive care that is so important to your long-term overall health.

If any of these situations applies to you, you may consider getting an individual dental plan as you head into the new year.

Studies show that spending on preventive dental care can save you later on restorative and emergency treatments. Taking care of your oral health also has a direct impact on your overall health. During a regular dental exam, your dentist can detect symptoms of more than 120 diseases that affect the rest of the body, such as diabetes and heart disease.[7],[8]

Visit or talk to an independent agent who sells dental insurance to find a plan that best meets your needs.

About Delta Dental of Illinois
Delta Dental is the national dental benefits leader covering 1 in 3 Americans who have dental insurance. Delta Dental of Illinois is one of 39 member companies that make up the national Delta Dental system. Based in Naperville, Illinois, Delta Dental of Illinois provides dental benefit programs to more than 6,000 Illinois companies and covers 2 million individuals, employees and family members nationwide. Delta Dental of Illinois is committed to improving oral health in our community and furthers this commitment through the work of Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation.

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