Every LA resident needs high-quality dental care. Unfortunately, most Los Angeles residents cannot find an affordable LA dentist to obtain the required dental treatment services.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, around 17% of children and 27% of adults have dental caries. Nearly 50% of Americans are suffering from periodontal diseases and oral infections.
Even though dental procedures are costly, they are not usually covered by most major health insurance policies. Instead, you will require a separate dental insurance plan.
The Overwhelming Need for Dental Care
The Federal Government has paid little attention to oral health. One of the failures of the Affordable Care Act is that it does not impose an obligation to insurance companies to include dental coverage as essential benefits. As a result, Medicare – one of the largest health insurance companies in the United States, among many other health insurance providers, does not cover any dental work.
Very few Americans have subscribed to separate dental insurance policies. Most Americans would rather pay for dental care by themselves, or live without it.
Oral health is not only about having nice teeth. Oral health can affect your overall well being. If you have poor oral health, you are more prone to having some specific illnesses such as heart disease, exacerbate diabetes, and stroke.
Due to the lack of a comprehensive dental health policy system, numerous LA residents are forced to live with the stigma that is normally associated with having bad teeth. Some of them have resorted to seeking out cheap dental services from quack professionals, using addictive medicine, and even attempting to pull out some of their teeth by themselves. Most of them do not know that they can find an affordable LA dentist, who can accept an installment payment plan.
Even though the correlation between overall health and oral health is quite clear, medical insurance companies are still adamant about covering for dental care services. Why is this so?
Dentistry’s Barbaric History
For ages, dentistry has always been viewed as separate from conventional medicine. Before the 19th century, barbers used to serve as dentists. They would pull out painful teeth and lance abscesses after they have finished trimming hair and whiskers.
Currently, as per Joseph Errante (a Professor of Dentistry at Columbia University College) dentistry is still viewed as a separate field from conventional medicine. According to him, this division has resulted in distinct insurance products for both dental and medical problems. Dental insurance policies are viewed as more financial products than health products. This means that they aren’t explicitly designed to cover for catastrophic events.
The Insurance Risk Game
The nature of risk in dental insurance is completely different from that for health insurance. For instance, if your arm breaks in an accident, you must visit a doctor right away. But, if one of your child’s teeth falls off during a football game, you can still wait for a considerable time before seeking a replacement.
Most insurers view dental problems to be less severe in comparison to health problems. However, this view is quite distorted. Although dental problems can wait, they will still deteriorate over time, resulting in life-threatening consequences.
The Cosmetic View of Dental Treatment
Generally, insurance companies view most dental procedures as cosmetic. This is because one of the major reasons why individuals visit dentists is to obtain beautiful smiles.
Some examples of dental treatments that are primarily viewed as cosmetic include teeth whitening, veneers, braces, gingival contouring, composite bonding, and implant insertion. According to some major health insurance companies, these procedures aren’t necessary, and they can be avoided.
Emotional health plays a vital role in an individual’s overall health. Beautiful smiles boost an individual’s confidence and self-esteem, resulting in a general improvement of his/her emotional health, which in turn positively affects his/her overall health. Good emotional health plays a significant role in protecting individuals from various lifestyle diseases.
Therefore, cosmetic dental procedures are essential and non-avoidable. They make an individual more confident, boosting his/her overall health and wellbeing.
Merging Medical Insurance with Dental Insurance
Even though there may be separate dental insurance plans, most people are reluctant to purchase them. According to NBC News, around 74 million Americans do not have dental insurance coverage.
There is a continually increasing interest in merging medical insurance with dental insurance. Most dentists are now attempting to close the gap between dentistry and conventional medicine. There is also significant data showing that the health insurance industry would benefit a lot if they incorporate dental coverage within their policies. This is because they will have more policy subscribers with a potentially low-risk rate.
Other Options to Dental Insurance
Do not worry if you don’t have separate dental insurance because there are other smart ways to finance expensive dental work. Some of these methods include:
- Opting for monthly or weekly dental payment plans
- Utilizing a health savings account
- Taking a dental loan
Otherwise, let’s hope that medical insurance companies will start covering dental work. You can also look for an affordable LA dentist if you intend to pay for the treatment costs by yourself.