Adults will not receive dental benefits through the Affordable Care Act, and the greatest majority of experts agree that America is facing a true oral health crisis. Several studies have pointed out that people who have got proper dental insurance are also getting regular dental care.
With a quick look on the dental insurance coverage map, it’s not difficult to understand that only about 2% of the seniors have any kind of dental insurance coverage.
Dental care coverage needs to be expanded and it needs to be made accessible for a greater category of people- adults, seniors, unemployed, people with disabilities, etc.
Oral Health America has recently published an important study entitled “State of Decay: Are older Americans coming of age without dental care?”. From this study one can understand that over the next few years, the “baby boomer” society is going to face quite some serious dental health issues.
Then, groups of people who are most vulnerable in front of this decayed dental system include ethnic and racial minorities and of course the poor who can barely make a living from one day to the next, let alone paying for dental insurance premiums.
Children will receive some dental coverage through the Affordable Care Act, but adults will not really benefit of such luxury. This means that people will just continue living on without dental insurance, or with a very limited coverage, and the dental problems of America will just keep piling up.
Even today, there is a huge number of uninsured who end up in the emergency room with very serious dental problems. These problems could have been avoided, if they had proper coverage to ensure those twice a year checkups and dental cleanings and a cavity filling.
Regular access to dental care would be the most important thing. There are millions with serious underlying health conditions such as diabetes or gum disease which only worsens the condition of their oral health by the day.
If these people do not have access to regular care, they will end up costing the Government millions for treatments for very serious conditions. When put in balance it is better for everyone if more flexibility is offered regarding access to dental care, than creating a nation with even more millions of adults with dental abscess and nasty infections, or with no teeth in their mouths.
Complete tooth loss is called “edentulitis” and it is becoming an extremely serious issue among adult Americans. Some other issues threatening the “well being” of American oral health include proper access to dentists, the water fluoridation problem, coverage through Medicaid and the list could definitely continue.
From the study it is revealed that the state with the worst grading when it comes to oral health, is Mississippi followed by Tennessee and Alabama. Other states that ranked “poor” are Virginia, California, Kentucky, Maine, Montana, Oregon, Wyoming and Pennsylvania.