How Preventative Dental Care Can Reduce Costs
In regards to overall oral health, day to day dental care is perhaps more important than regular check-ups and cleanings. There’s only so much that a dentist or dental hygienist can fix during a one hour cleaning, so implementing a proper daily oral care routine is vital to maintaining overall dental health.Bad oral health can lead to problems eating, speaking, sleeping and other daily activities which can affect overall health. The best way to prevent dental problems is with regular brushing and flossing. Dentists recommend brushing twice a day for two minutes at a time and flossing daily. If a good daily dental routine is not followed, major oral health problems could occur that are expensive and possibly painful to correct.
Cost of Corrective Dental Care
Most insurance providers require a copay on all dental procedures performed. For a cavity filling the copay may be up to twenty percent, while a more involved procedure like a root canal or crown may require a fifty percent copay. Many dental plans also carry an annual maximum that requires patients to pay any costs they may incur over the maximum limit which normally runs somewhere between $1,000 to $1,500 per person. If dental health is allowed to deteriorate significantly, a full dental reconstruction can cost anywhere from $45,000 to $80,000. This is a considerable amount of money that could be saved by simply following a sensible and simple daily dental routine.
How to Avoid Corrective Dental Care Costs
However in most cases these costs can be avoided by maintaining a diligent daily oral care routine of brushing and flossing. Because preventative dental care has proven effective at reducing the need for corrective procedures, most insurance companies cover most or all of the cost of routine dental checkups which include cleanings and examinations. These preventative steps lessen the likelihood of future dental problems that need costly corrections. Other preventative dental methods include a proper diet and avoiding bad habits like smoking or drinking alcohol. A bad diet filled with fatty or acidic foods can damage teeth by contributing to plaque buildup and breaking down the tooth enamel. Smoking and drinking also has a similarly bad effect on teeth because the chemicals in tobacco and alcohol can cause tooth decay, plaque buildup, and discoloration. Tobacco may also cause gum disease, tooth loss or oral cancer.A proper diet and healthy habits are important factors in a proper oral care routine.
Other Preventative Dental Methods
There are several other preventative dental methods that can help maintain good oral health. Fluoride treatments and sealants are two methods that keep teeth strong and clean. Fluoride keeps teeth strong and healthy and most dentists offer in-office fluoride treatments as part of an annual or semi-annual cleaning. Sealants are thin coatings placed on back teeth that help protect permanent teeth from decay and damage. Sealants can be placed on teeth in a dentist’s office and are usually offered as a same-day service.