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Where to Find Low-Cost Dental Care
State and Local Resources
The local or state health department in your area may know of programs that provide free and discounted dental care. Find local and state resources by:
Dental Schools/Dental Hygiene Schools
Dental schools will have clinics where dental students can gain experience with treating patients and providing low-cost care to them. The students are supervised by experienced and licensed professional dentists.
This kind of low-cost supervised care can be obtained through dental hygiene schools as a part of the dental hygienist training experience.
Community Health Centers
You might be able to get cheap dental care through a federally funded health center. These places charge you what you can reasonably afford based on your current income. They can be found in most cities and in several rural areas. Please visit the “Find a Health Center” section of the Health Resources and Services Administration website to find one near you.
Medicaid and CHIP
Medicaid is a state-run program that offers medical – and sometimes dental – benefits to eligible individuals and their families. Medicaid requires states to provide dental benefits to children, but individual states are able to choose whether these benefits are offered to adults or not. Most states offer only a limited dental service for adults, while other states will provide more extensive services.
CHIP is another state-run program. CHIP is for children whose families earn too much for Medicaid, but still don't earn enough for private insurance. CHIP is designed to offer children up to 19 years old with the dental services they need. The level of dental care offered by CHIP varies between states.
Medicare is a federally funded health insurance program for people aged over 65 and people under 65 who have certain disabilities. Medicare will only cover any dental health conditions related to the specific medical conditions and treatments. It doesn't cover routine care such as checkups, fillings, cleanings, and dentures.
United Way might be able to connect you to free or discounted dental services for your community. Find your local United Way by visiting United Way and clicking on the “find Your United Way” link to the top right of the screen.
NIDCR occasionally looks for volunteers with specific oral, dental, or craniofacial conditions to take part in research studies known as clinical trials. Researchers occasionally provide the participants in the study with a limited range of free/discounted dental treatment for the condition being studied. Visit the NIDCR website and click the “Clinical Trials” link to learn more about clinical trials. To find and participate in clinical trials, please contact: