The ADA is reporting on the results of the Oral Health Status and Access to Oral Health Care for U.S. Adults Aged 18-64 Survey and found that cost is the main reason people forgo a visit to the dentist for an oral health problem.
42% of the survey respondents said they could not afford dental treatment, or did not have dental insurance.
The purpose of the survey was to develop and expand oral health outcome measures, and to produce estimates for the U.S. population as a whole that could be used to study the impact of the initiatives to improve oral health.
Overall, 16% of the dentate adults had an unmet dental care needs due to cost in the past 12 months prior to the survey.
The report further reveals that among dentate adults with one or more mouth or teeth problems, more than one-half of those who were uninsured had unmet dental need due to cost; one-third of those with Medicaid had unmet dental need compared with almost one-quarter of those with private health insurance, but no dental coverage, and more than one-tenth of those with private health insurance with dental coverage. (Source: ADA)
If public health insurance is supposed to help with health care, the survey revealed that adults with Medicaid (19%) were almost five times as likely as adults with private health insurance (4%) to have poor oral health.
17,000 men and women from all walks of life were solicited for this survey survey called upon by the Surgeon General to provide information about the status of the U.S. population’s oral health and the ability to access care.
To read the full results from this survey, see: Oral Health Status Measured in National Survey