How Accessible is Dental Care in the US?

You know the reasons you need some sort of dental care coverage: Going to the dentist and other related specialists like orthodontists and periodontists is costly; maintaining dental health is critical for your overall health (it will reduce illness and the costs associated with it); everyone in your family needs at least basic professional care; and, if you, or anyone in your family, has a dental emergency – like millions of children and adults do each year – you certainly don’t want to suffer physically or financially.


According to a joint report from the National Association of Dental Plans and Delta Dental Plans Association, 187 million Americans (60% of the population) are covered by some type of dental plan. But what about the other 40% who still need some sort of support and are struggling to afford it? Should they turn to our government’s web site for help?


Here are my thoughts about options for dental coverage. There is a lot of information there, and I know from the myriad conversations I’ve had and questions I’ve been asked, that most folks are overwhelmed and confused by it.


What you need to know is this:

  • Dental coverage is included in some, but not all the health plans listed.
  • Many of the plans that do offer dental care, only cover children’s needs (through age 18).
  • Stand-alone dental plans may be available, but only in certain areas, and not without the purchase of medical insurance plans.
  • Some states, like California and Washington, do not offer medical plans that include dental coverage.
  • There is no penalty for not purchasing qualified dental insurance.


Of course, you can read more about it and see what’s available to you anytime at


So what other options exist? Can a person who has medical insurance (through private policy, work, or school), get a reasonable dental plan? And what about people that have no medical insurance at all?


Certainly, insurance agents and brokers can be found via personal connections and/or web research, a time-consuming and often-expensive possibility. But you could – and should – also consider a discount dental plan via Here, you’ll have the opportunity to compare what’s available and then purchase the best, most appropriate, and most economical plan in your area – on your time.


Insurance experts assure consumers that affordable plans exist and urge them not to procrastinate. As with most things, preparedness is not just helpful, it’s key.


All the best and happy holidays,

Craig Martin

Vice President, Business Development


Do you have questions about dental care access in the United States? Let us know! Leave your questions in the comments below and we are more than happy to answer them.

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