When was the last time you saw the dentist?
If you honestly can’t remember, you’re not alone; a whopping 70 percent of PRSI payers missed their free dental check-ups last year, according to new figures released by the Irish Dental Association.
The Association is urging people to avail of their free annual dental exam before the end of 2022.
The Dental Treatment Benefit Scheme (DTBS) is available to all insured workers and retired people who have the required number of PRSI contributions. The benefit covers a free check-up once a year, as well as a subsidised scale and polish for a maximum charge of €15 – just the thing to get your smile sparkling for those Christmas photos.
Figures show that a total of 2,249,148 people were eligible for a free check-up in 2021, but only 686,656 patients availed of the benefit.
An additional 80,000 people are now eligible for a free check-up under the DTBS this year after the minimum threshold was reduced to 39 PRSI contributions for those aged between 25 to 28-years-old.
“Diseases of the mouth and oral cavity have a significant impact in terms of pain, suffering, impairment of function, and reduced quality of life,” said Chair of the Irish Dental Association GP Committee, Dr Will Rymer.
“Visiting your dentist at least once a year is important to ensure that any issues are detected early. If left untreated they could become bigger and more expensive problems later.”
To book your free check-up, simply make an appointment with your local dentist.