If you don’t have dental insurance, then you may be on the hunt for affordable and free dental plans. In addition, most dental policies have a limit on benefits and only pay a portion for services such as crowns and root canals. Without coverage, you’ll want to skip seeing the dentist which is not good for your oral health.
There are plenty of ways to save money on dental work, especially in emergency situations. If you lack dental coverage and looking for affordable options, here are some alternatives you should consider.
Affordable and Free Dental Plans
Local non-profit organizations can be another way to access affordable and free dental plans. There are also a wide variety of national non-profits such as Dentistry From the Heart that provide dental care to low-income families and individuals. Most of these dentists and orthodontists donate their time and services.
Dentistry from the Heart is one of the most popular non-profits you’ll come across. Since its launch in 2011, this non-profit organization provides free dental care to the general public. They host regular events to those who live in Shreveport and Bossier City, Louisiana in January. There are also opportunities to receive free or low-cost dental care throughout the year.
State and Federal Programs
Since more major health care plans don’t have affordable and free dental plans, some state and federal programs do. Medicaid is one of the most common options for low-income families and individuals. Coverage for adults vary by state and may not offer the same coverage for men and women. Child, on the other hand, can receive free dental coverage.
One challenge many patients face is that few dental practices accept Medicaid. There are options for seniors who are on Medicare. Regular Medicare doesn’t include dental care. Medicare Advantage Plans provide dental care option through private health care plans. Premiums vary depending upon the plan’s coverage and benefits.
Veteran have access to free or low-cost dental care. If eligible, you can get services at Dentists for Veterans. If not eligible, veterans can purchase low-cost dental care via the VA Dental Insurance Program (VADIP).
Veterans can also receive free cleanings on Veteran’s Day at eligible A Brighter Smile Dental Care locations. Veterans must bring a DD214 or valid military ID to receive free care. Since care is based on first come, first serve, veterans must schedule prior to the event.
Discount cards charge a monthly fee or annual fee in exchange for affordable and free dental plans. Common types of discount cards include Carefree Dental or the Careington Dental Discount Plan. Carefree Dental costs $15.96 per month and allows members to save up to 50% on cleanings, X-rays, and other services. Meanwhile, Careington Dental Discount Plan is only $9.95 per month and provides upwards to 50% on most dental treatments. Members also have options to spend a low flat fee on services such as fillings and porcelain crownings.
Dental Savings Plans
Dental savings plans provide affordable and free dental plans to those who are uninsured or have little dental benefits. These types of plans are typically cheaper for patients and dentists alike. Some benefits to joining dental savings plans include instant activation, no annual limits, no claims, and no health restrictions. As a member, you use your membership card when visiting participating dental offices. You pay the discounted rate for the service you receive.
Teledentistry is growing in popularity. It’s changing the way that dentists provide affordable care to their patients, especially in emergency situations. Teledentistry allows you to speak with a licensed professional to get an immediate consultation to address some of your concerns. A prescription is then sent electronically to a local or online pharmacy. You may also receive a free discount card that can help pay the costs of follow-up services.
Online Smile Makeovers
One of the most affordable and free dental plans in 2018 is online smile makeovers. One of the most popular online makeovers is through A Brighter Smile. In the spring and summer, they host their annual Mother’s Day and Smile Makeover contests. There’s even an opportunity for patients to receive free braces in the month of June. All you have to do is like their Facebook page to get more information.