Why 37 million people in the U.S. don’t have dental coverage — and the painful price they pay

U.S. adults are less likely to visit the dentist around age 80, according to new research. And that trend that could have far-reaching health and economic consequences.

The study, published in the journal Research on Aging, analyzed the use of dental services among adults aged 50 and older using five waves of the University of Michigan’s Health and Retirement Study. It found, in part, that “as people became older, the use of dental services declined.”

Fewer older people have dental coverage. Around two in three Medicare beneficiaries in the U.S. — equivalent to nearly 37 million people — have no dental coverage, according to a Kaiser Family Foundation analysis.

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