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High costs associated with dental insurance, in combination with a currently challenging economic climate, may be affecting the level of dental care received by North Carolina families, it has been suggested.
Figures from the 2008 North Carolina Child Health Report Card reveal that 19 percent of kindergarten-aged children have untreated tooth decay.
Although this represents a 20 percent improvement from 2002 levels, the North Carolina Institute of Medicine and Action of Children still awarded the state a "D" in this category.
Health experts and dentists in the county suggested to WFMY News 2 that many people in the state may struggle to pay for dental insurance and dental care.
The news comes after a Government Accountability Office report suggested that as many as 6.5 million kids across the country are suffering from tooth decay.
It attributed the problem, in part, to the reluctance of some dentists to accept Medicaid dental insurance.
In North Carolina, it was discovered that less than half of children aged one to 14 who qualify for Medicaid visit the dentist.
Those who find difficulties paying for dental care may want to explore alternative options for funding their treatment.
Discount dental plans, an alternative to dental insurance, can help people save 10 to 60 percent on most dental procedures.
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