Teeth, generally speaking, don't get better with age. People know this. So when a WellPoint survey analyzed results from respondents age 45 and older, the surveyors were surprised by the apparent disconnect that came through.

Ninety percent told WellPoint that they understood the importance of good dental health to their overall health and quality of life. But while 83 percent of those surveyed said they had health coverage, just 41 percent said they had dental coverage.

A third of those without dental coverage cited the added burden of dental insurance expenses as a primary reason why they were going without.

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