Unnecessary ER Visits for Dental Problems Rising

Reading USA Today’s recent article on the rise of ER visits, it hit a nerve with the office. We see many emergency appointments in a week and almost all of them can be avoided. Did you know that, according to the article, “an analysis of the most recent federal data by the American Dental Association shows dental ER visits doubled from 1.1 million in 2000 to 2.2 million in 2012, or one visit every 15 seconds. ADA officials, as well as many dentists across the nation say the problem persists despite health reform.” 

The bottom line to this problem is that there is a lack of routine care in our lives – whether it is coming to the office every 3,4, or 6 months for periodontal care and periodical exams. We stress the importance of preventative care rather than what insurance will cover. We see that government insurance plans don’t even cover most basic preventative care and that even The Affordable Care Act only requires health plans to cover dental services for children but not adults. 

“If we were going to the dentist more often, we could avoid a lot of this,” said Dr. Ruchi Sahota, a California dentist and consumer adviser for the ADA. “Prevention is priceless.” And we couldn’t agree more!

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