Many families in North America are finding it increasingly difficult to gain access to dental care without proper dental or health care. As the economy continues to worsen, patients in Vancouver and the surrounding municipalities are choosing to skip their regular dental appointments.
In a dramatic wake-up reminder to maintain proper oral health care, a 24 year North American man passed away earlier this week due to an infected tooth. According to ABC, Kyle Willis began noticing a toothache around fourteen days ago. When told that it was necessary for his wisdom tooth to be extracted immediately, he declined the dental work because he did not have a job at the time and lacked health insurance.
When the symptoms worsened and his face began to swell, Willis was taken to the hospital and was given prescriptions for pain medication and antibiotics. He could not pay for both, so Willis opted simply for pain medication.
Without proper dental procedures or medication, Willis’ tooth infection spread–causing his brain to swell. He died Tuesday.
Many dental patients in North America are ignoring the fact that dental disease can lead to serious illness, or even death. In April, a survey was conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation discovering that 33% of people surveyed skipped dental appointments or dental checkups because they were too expensive.
Maintaining a healthy smile is not just purely for cosmetic reasons. Dental diseases are the only cause of death that is easy to find, treat and prevent. With regular dental appointments, oral health exams and routine cleanings, dental patients in North America can live longer lives with beautiful smiles.
For patients that do not have access to dental insurance and can’t afford to go to the dentist, many dental clinics offer payment plans that suit most financial situations. If you are not able to pay for dental care, even with the help of a financial plan, dental patients in Canada can:
- Contact a government worker to see if you qualify for funding assistance for dental care
- Visit your local dentist school where students offer dental service for a lower price
In addition, you can escape expensive dentistry procedures by proactively practicing good oral health. Brush, floss and visit your dentist on a regular schedule for dental exams. These routine check-ups may require payment, but they are much cheaper than dealing with serious dental issues that arise from neglect.