ANDOVER, England, April 1, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- A lack of affordable dental care could have a severe effect on the future state of Britain's teeth, according to a recent survey into the oral health of the nation carried out by healthcare provider Simplyhealth.

Just half of the population is currently under the care of an NHS dentist, with a further 39% claiming they have struggled to find one, with many giving up on the search all together. Simplyhealth's Annual Dental Survey also found that one in ten of the 1,000 adults surveyed admitted to not having a dentist at all, whilst 35% revealed that putting off visiting the dentist has had an adverse impact on their oral health. This neglect resulting in tooth loss, abscesses and the need for extreme dental procedures.

One in 100 men has never visited a dentist before, compared with just one in 300 women. These statistics could be set to rise with forthcoming generations, with financial concerns and a lack of NHS dentistry now impacting not only the oral health of the nation's working population, but that of their children too. Shockingly, one in 30 parents admitted their children have never visited a dentist, citing prohibitive cost as the main reason for putting off the trip.

In fact, 43% of those surveyed have put off visiting the dentist due to worries over cost. This figure is higher amongst those in their late twenties and early thirties (53%). Over a third of the population (39%) has been forced to resort to taking on credit card debt in order to pay for dental treatment costing over GBP50.

Michael Thomas, practicing dentist commented: It is clear from these results that greater focus needs to be placed on the importance of maintaining a good level of dental health. Failure to look after your teeth can have an impact not just on your oral health, but that of your entire body, and in some cases can result in problems requiring severe treatment that could have been avoidable with regular check-ups.

James Glover, spokesperson for Simplyhealth who carried out the research as part of its Annual Dental Survey, says: The results of this year's survey clearly demonstrate the struggle people are facing to find affordable dental care. Whether someone is able to access an NHS dentist or not, I would encourage people to explore affordable alternative options such as a dental plan or cash plan from Simplyhealth, to avoid the pain and inconvenience of unnecessary dental procedures.

Simplyhealth provides cover for dental check-ups, treatment and emergencies through its Simply Cash Plan and Simply Dental Plan. Perfect for both NHS and private access with claims paid usually within a few days. For further information visit or speak to someone in one of our UK call centres on 0800-072-6715.

Notes to Editor

About Simplyhealth's Annual Dental Survey

- The research was conducted by Opinion Matters using an online fieldwork methodology. Opinion Matters surveyed 250 HR managers and 1,005 working adults between 24 February and 4 March 2010

About Simplyhealth

- Previously known as HSA, BCWA, LHF, HealthSure and Totally Active, our family of health companies have joined together over the last 8 years to form Simplyhealth - At Simplyhealth, we have been providing healthcare solutions for nearly 140 years, dedicated to serving our customers through a variety of cash plans, dental plans, private medical insurance, healthcare trusts and mobility and living aids - Simplyhealth is a trading name of Simplyhealth Access, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority - As of December 2009, Simplyhealth had 1.3 million customers providing cover for some 2.3 million people - Simplyhealth is committed in its constitution to making a positive impact on its communities. Each year, we help health related charities and causes to the tune of at least GBP1million

SOURCE: Simplyhealth

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