A record number of Americans are going to emergency rooms for dental treatment, a problem the dental industry says is straining the nation's health care system and increasing its costs.

Research out Tuesday from the American Dental Association found the number of dental ER visits in the United States jumped from 1.1 million in 2000 to 2.1 million in 2010. And that comes with a big price tag: Those visits cost the health care system up to $2 billion annually.

Most of those patients are young adults, the analysis found. That's due to decreases in private dental insurance coverage, combined with significant reductions in adult dental Medicaid programs that have hit young adults particularly hard, the nation's largest dental association said.

Complete your profile to continue reading and get FREE access to BenefitsPRO, part of your ALM digital membership.

  • Critical BenefitsPRO information including cutting edge post-reform success strategies, access to educational webcasts and videos, resources from industry leaders, and informative Newsletters.
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM, BenefitsPRO magazine and BenefitsPRO.com events
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including ThinkAdvisor.com and Law.com
NOT FOR REPRINT

© 2024 ALM Global, LLC, All Rights Reserved. Request academic re-use from www.copyright.com. All other uses, submit a request to [email protected]. For more information visit Asset & Logo Licensing.