If you can’t afford a dentist, you shouldn’t worry. There are a variety of options available to finance dental procedures and even ways to receive dental care for free (for qualified patients).
An estimated 74 million Americans do not have dental insurance coverage. For those without dental insurance, there are various financial assistance options for dental care, including local health departments, dental schools, clinical trials, and state and local resources.2
Dental discount plans, also known as dental savings plans, are an affordable alternative to traditional dental insurance.
With a discount dental plan, you pay an annual fee and receive discounts on dental services throughout the membership course. After you sign up, you’ll have access to a nationwide network of over 140,000 dentists offering 10 to 60 percent savings on preventative and restorative treatments to dental plan members.
For more information, visit https://www.dentalplans.com/
Cosmetic dentistry grants are special grants provided by the government to help certain qualifying people to pay for cosmetic dentistry procedures.
The Donated Dental Services (DDS) program is a means by which dentists provide free dental treatment to vulnerable people who cannot afford necessary treatment or get public aid.
Care Credit is a healthcare credit card that can be used to pay for out-of-pocket expenses not covered by medical insurance. Care Credit also offers special financing options that you may not be able to get with other cards.
Care Credit can be used for preventative, restorative, and cosmetic dentistry services.
The Give Back a Smile Program is a means by which volunteer cosmetic dentists donate their time and services to restore the smiles of domestic abuse victims. It is sponsored by the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, and has been used to restore the smiles of over 1,800 people to date.
United Way is a network of nonprofit fundraising affiliates that connects low-income or otherwise qualifying patients with free or low-cost dental care.
Medicare is a health insurance program for people who are either 65 years and older or who have specific disabilities.
Medicaid is a state-run program that provides dental benefits to eligible individuals and families.
Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) provides medical coverage and dental services to children up to age 19 who qualify.3
Dental schools can be a good option to find quality, reduced-cost dental treatment from dental students who are being supervised by experienced dentists.
Dental hygiene schools also offer supervised, low-cost preventive dental care as part of the training experience for dental hygienists.
Public dental clinics are community-based and patient-directed organizations that deliver comprehensive, culturally competent, high-quality primary health care services to vulnerable individuals and families. These clinics, funded by the Health Resources & Services Organization, serve 1 out of 11 people in the United States.
Medical researchers often seek volunteers with specific dental conditions to participate in research studies, also known as clinical trials. During a clinical trial, qualifying participants receive limited free or low-cost dental treatment for the condition being researched.
Dental loans are loans that can be used to pay for dental procedures. Dental loans can fund any type of dental work including dental emergencies, planned cosmetic work, or other procedures.4,5
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