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California is one of the several states in which residents are having difficulty paying for the dental care they need.
The LA Times recently reported that about one out of four Californian adults has at least one untreated cavity. The number of children with an untreated cavity is higher.
"Our research tells us that many people in California have been avoiding routine care that might have cost about $100 for a checkup and cleaning, and then find themselves in the emergency room, where they get only an antibiotic, a bill that can average over $600 and instructions to see a dentist," said Len Finocchio of the California Healthcare Foundation.
Wynne Grossman of the Dental Health Foundation in Oakland told the Times that many people have dental coverage that requires them to pay up to 50 percent of the bill on procedures like fillings, tooth extractions, root canals and tooth implants, which can be pricey. The recession has also made life so expensive for some people that they don't have any dental coverage at all.
The Mayo Clinic says that untreated cavities often get bigger and bigger. If dental care is never sought out, a simple cavity could lead to tooth loss, an infection and other more severe complications. One way to avoid getting cavities is to brush twice a day and floss every night. Seeing a dentist regularly is also important.
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