Sometimes it’s easy to spot ways to save money in our day-to-day lives. Other times, it helps to have them pointed out. Here’s one that will make you smile: better oral health will save you money on your annual health and dental care costs.
Americans with dental benefits are more likely to go to the dentist, receive preventive care, and experience greater overall health. That’s the value of dental insurance.
Ninety-three percent of Americans believe oral health is very or extremely important to their overall health, according to Delta Dental’s State of America’s Oral Health Report, and 90 percent who have dental insurance indicate that having coverage allows them to maintain good oral health and is worth the cost.
Here’s how preventive dental care, good oral health, and dental insurance go hand-in-hand:
While it’s important to brush and floss well, regular visits to the dentist are also necessary. Because dental insurance focuses on prevention, many services like exams, cleanings, and X-rays are covered at 100 percent.
Dental insurance also helps reduce out-of-pocket costs for many procedures by cutting down on what you pay. Without dental insurance, you would be responsible for the full cost of treatment.
Delta Dental helps you save even more because we negotiate lower fees with our in-network dentists. With 96% of South Dakota dentists in our network, we make it easy to find the right dentist for you and cost-saving dental care wherever you are.
Here’s an example of the value of dental insurance for a family of four – each who visit the dentist twice for preventive care and have a cavity filled:
*Plan premium and dental service fees are for illustrative purposes only. Premium rates are dependent on your plan. ** Check your specific plan details, as preventive coverage may vary.
Families and individuals with dental insurance are significantly more likely to seek preventive care than those without coverage. And people who develop more complicated oral problems are more likely to skip needed treatments due to cost if they don’t have dental insurance. Mostly untreated and often preventable oral diseases result in more than 2 million emergency room visits nationwide each year.
When you schedule regular preventive checkups, your dentist can detect problems early. This can help you avoid more costly and complex procedures, like crowns and root canals. In fact, for each dollar spent on preventive services, it is estimated that $50 or more is saved on more expensive procedures down the road.
Dental care is good for your smile, and it has a positive effect on your overall health. Some costs and savings don’t show up right away in the form of money saved today. Studies show that oral health conditions like gum disease are linked with many chronic health conditions like diabetes, heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, and pregnancy complications.
During an oral exam, your dentist can potentially detect signs in the mouth of more than 120 diseases, including oral cancer. This can lead to earlier, less costly and even life-saving treatment.
And when oral diseases go untreated, it can lead to problems with eating, speaking, learning and productivity for children and adults.
Your oral health affects your day-to-day sense of well-being. 1 in 4 South Dakotans report they have anxiety or feel embarrassed because of the condition of their mouth and teeth. Many say they avoid smiling and reduce social participation because of their oral health.
A smile affects every aspect of your life in a positive way. It will also impact the world around you in a positive way. A healthy smile is the gift that keeps on giving, to you, your body, and those around you.
*Updated November 2021