Dental benefits

Don’t retire your dental coverage

When retirement is on the horizon and you’re itching to enjoy it, make sure to keep oral health top of mind. Don’t let your new lifestyle cause you to overlook the importance of proper dental care and dental coverage.

As with every stage of life, older adults face a unique set of oral health changes. These can include an increase in cavities, dry mouth, receding gums and more, making it especially important to stay vigilant about maintaining a healthy smile.

Tooth decay is the most prevalent chronic disease among those 65 and older.

Preventive care is essential for keeping teeth strong and functional. Regular checkups and cleanings are some of the best ways to avoid cavities and gum disease or to catch them early before they require costly treatments.

Unfortunately, many older adults don’t keep regular appointments. This may be due to the fact that many Americans lose their benefits when they retire if they previously had coverage through their employer. Plus, many Medicare plans don’t cover dental care.

40% of retirees report not visiting the dentist within the previous year.1

While you can pay out of pocket for dental expenses, you also have several coverage options to keep you smiling for years to come. Most Delta Dental companies offer plans designed for individuals, and makes it easy to find coverage. With these plans, you’ll receive the same high-quality dental coverage you would have from an employer along with access to the largest network of dentists nationwide. Depending on where you live, you may also be able to obtain dental coverage through Medicaid or Medicare Advantage plans.

In some states, retirees without coverage can take advantage of a dental discount program called Delta Dental Patient Direct®.* This program allows patients to visit participating dentists who have agreed to discounted fees. Patients then pay for dental services out of pocket at their appointments.

By taking time to consider dental coverage now, you can focus on all the benefits retirement has to offer without letting oral health issues interrupt your plans.

1According to a study reported by CNBC in 2016, Oral Health America 2015 Public Opinion Poll

*States with Delta Dental Patient Direct include Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New Mexico, Ohio, Oklahoma and Washington.