According to the University of Michigan National Poll on Healthy Aging, the dental health of middle-aged Americans is of great concern with more uncertainty to come. In fact one in three middle aged Americans in the survey, between the ages of 50 and 64 feel embarrassed by the state of their teeth. And a larger percentage report dental problems in the last couple of years have caused difficulty with eating, mouth pain, time-off work and other health issues.
So what are the main issues?
- Lack of prevention stands out as a key problem. The proverb : “it’s easier to stop something happening in the first place than to repair the damage after it has happened” is certainly true.
- Forty percent of respondents not getting regular dental examinations, cleanings nor taking the opportunity to get better advice on oral hygiene, etc. All of which can help prevent and reduce the likelihood of more serious (read – expensive & severe) dental problems.
- Lack of insurance coverage appears to be another significant reason for not visiting the dentist and receiving appropriate treatment. Some 28 percent of those polled said they don’t have dental insurance. This increases to 56 percent with those who only seek dental care for serious problems. For the future, 51 percent of middle aged respondents said they simply didn’t know how they will get dental insurance coverage after they turn 65.
It is important to have regular dental examinations to prevent gum disease, avoid the development of cavities and remove build up of stubborn plaque. It is also very important to be screened for oral cancer. We would always urge you to make an appointment with your dentist at your earliest convenience.
At Kelli Slate DDS, we accept a number of financing options including CareCredit : an external financing company offering payment plans with low monthly payments.
Our full story – Dental pain : ignoring it will not make it stop.
Original source : A National Poll on Healthy Aging was carried out by the U-M Institute for Healthcare Policy and Innovation with support from AARP and Michigan Medicine, U-M’s academic medical center.