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Are debt worries putting people off going to the dentist?

By Daniel Culpan

1 May2021

Glass with toothbrushes According to new research by Simplyhealth, many people in the UK may be putting off regular trips to the dentist due to worries about the impact it could have on their bank balance.

A poll of nearly 12,000 British adults found that over a fifth (21%) say they can't afford the cost of dental bills and one in ten (10%) are worried that the price of dental treatment could put them out of pocket since they haven't been for some time.

So there are concerns that people could be neglecting their dental health due to the financial pressure they're under. The National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE) says that people should not leave longer than two years between dental appointments. Yet 20% of adults who've been to the dentist say they've not been for a check-up in 18 months or more.

At a time when many people are budgeting strictly to stay on top of rising living costs and squeezed disposable incomes, a costly dental bill could force people to turn to debt in order to cover the expense - something so many of us are keen to avoid these days.

Spokesperson for Simplyhealth, James Glover, commented: "Concerns over the cost of dental treatment are apparent. With 22% of those people that have visited the dentist receiving bills of over 300, and 44% of these paying for the treatment by credit card, it is vital that individuals plan how to cover these costs."

Image iStockPhotos / Nick M. Do

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Tags: bills, healthcare, budgeting, debt, Simplyhealth

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