Affording dental work is no root canal if you keep these tips in mind -- even if you don't have dental insurance.
- Step 1: Contact the Bureau of Primary Health Care -- part of the Health Resources and Services Administration -- to see if they have a community health center in your area that provides dental care.
- Step 2: Contact the United Way for information about free or reduced-cost dental services in your community. One way or another, you should now have something to smile about.
- FACT: Dentists were drilling nearly perfect holes in their patients' teeth as early as 7000 BCE.
- Step 3: Consider participating in a clinical trial. The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research -- part of the NIH -- sometimes seeks volunteers to participate in clinical trials. Dental treatment may be available at reduced cost to participants.
- Step 4: Consider a dental finance company. These companies will often loan you money for cosmetic procedures including porcelain veneers, dental implants, orthodontics, invisible braces, and restorations.
- Step 5: Ask your state or local department of public welfare whether Medicaid covers dental care in your state -- if you are eligible for that program.
- TIP: Medicaid is funded by federal, state, and local governments.
- Step 6: Contact a local dental school. Dental schools often charge lower fees for checkups and cleaning because care is provided by students under the supervision of trained dentists.