Profitt Report: How to see the dentist without insurance

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With the rising cost of healthcare, many people may find themselves skipping dental visits, especially seniors. Medicare doesn’t cover routine dental services. However, Consumer Reports says there are a number of ways for you to get the care you need without it taking a huge bite out of your budget.

If you’re looking for a way to cover or lower the costs of dental care and treatment, Donna Rosato of Consumer Reports says buying private dental insurance is one option but it can be costly and often comes with a cap. A lot of private insurance only covers so much and you can still be on the hook for thousands of dollars out of pocket. Another insurance option is a Dental HMO which will cover things like routine cleanings and offer discounts on other procedures. You could also join a dental savings plan which costs about $100 per year for an individual or $250 for a family. A dental savings plan isn’t health insurance but it does connect you to a network of dentists who have agreed to provide discounts on their services. Consumer Reports says you can also negotiate with your dentist to see if they can offer you a lower price, or contact a dental schools to see if they offer discounted services.

Your best bet for keeping hefty dental bills at bay is practicing good oral hygiene at home. Brushing your teeth twice a day, using soft bristles to brush, fluoride toothpaste and fluoride mouth rinse. Dentists also recommend cutting back on sugary food and acidic drinks like soda that can erode the enamel on your teeth.

FAIR Health Consumer and Healthcare Bluebook are websites where you can compare dental care costs in your area.

All Consumer Reports material Copyright 2017 Consumer Reports, Inc. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Consumer Reports is a not-for-profit organization which accepts no advertising. It has no commercial relationship with any advertiser or sponsor on this site. For more information visit consumer.org.

The Profitt Report wants to hear from you - please send consumer questions and story ideas to ProfittReport@WSMH.com

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