Free and Low Cost Dental Care for Uninsured and Low-Income People

Should they encounter a toothache, they will try to mend the problem on their own, because they cannot afford to go to the dentist.

On the other hand, too many people do not even care about their oral hygiene, so they will end up in emergency rooms for complex oral surgery treatments, which translate into bills of thousands of dollars.

A few years ago, there has been a case where a little boy has developed a tooth abscess, and since there was no proper dental coverage available, the infection spread to his brains. The boy has died, sparking a lot of controversy in the media, but other than that, no serious changes happened.

A little spark of shine is visible, thanks to the many free dental events organized by dental health associations. These free dental care events for low-income are held all throughout the country by humanitarian organizations such as the Mission of Mercy.

These events welcome patients on low income or those without any dental insurance, and during a two-day dental event, volunteer dentists are able to offer treatment even to 1,500+ patients on the spot.

Then, there are numerous free dental clinics available, which are offered by the medical universities throughout the country. Certainly, these low-income people do not have access to the internet in order to check out the next free dental event, so many of them do not even learn abut these free dental clinics in time.

This is why it is important to make everything possible and spread the awareness regarding the existence of free dental events among the poorer strata of the society. There are many low-income people who struggle with serious dental complications, and they just carry on doing physical work and caring for their children while ill, because they have no other option.

Next, there are many discounted dental insurance plans available for people who cannot afford to pay for the regular treatments needed. These plans are usually offered by dentists, and the patient will generally have to subscribe for membership. The patient receives then a membership card, and when he/she goes to the dentist, this card is being shown.

Quite rarely, but there are a few dentists who are willing to customize the fees according to the ability of the patient to pay. For example, the dentist might accept that the patient pays for the treatment in installments. Thus, the patient can get all his teeth cleaned and filled, and make the payments over a period of 6 months for instance.

The government organizations and the NGOs are also a good starting point. They offer affordable dental plans which are tailored to suit the needs of a poor person, who cannot possibly afford to pay $300 for an extraction or a root canal treatment.

There are also the university dental clinics, where patients can get treatments for only a fraction of the normal cost. Sometimes, patients can save even up to 50% or more from the charges required by the private dentist.

As you can note, there are opportunities, they just need to be seized properly by the targeted people. The low-income or underinsured people should have access to such important information. What to the rest of the people seems only yet another free dental care event, for these people may mean the world.

There isn’t need for children to die because of an infected tooth, or for poor pregnant women to develop complications because they cannot afford to treat their teeth properly before pregnancy. Everybody deserves a chance to good health.

  • Dr. Kearney

    It’s pretty sad, but I know lots of people who could easily afford dental and/or health insurance, but they simply don’t care about it, until they really need it.

  • Fiona Stewart

    this is such great news and long overdue. It’s awful to think of people on low incomes struggle with physical pain due to a lack of funds, especially the young and the long-term damage ignoring such problems might cause.

  • Lisa Marie

    I’m convinced that a surprising portion of the cost of dental care goes to paying for all the staff that dentists have for billing and processing insurance. I’m thinking of the dentist my mother goes to, who not only has an office full of staff, but also outsources the insurance processing to another company. All that overhead may not be the lion’s share of the cost, but it can’t help matters.