Tough Times Prompt Consumers to Cut Back on Their Dental Insurance

Dentistry Today


In the past year, 39% of Americans reduced or eliminated the insurance they carry, according to an online survey of more a thousand respondents by ValuePenguin. That number jumps to 65% of those laid off or furloughed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Consumers who cut their insurance most commonly reduced or eliminated their health insurance, followed by auto and dental coverage.

The largest percentage of these consumers, 45%, wanted to save money, and 29% simply couldn’t afford the cost of coverage. However, 63% regret cutting back or eliminating their coverage, and 52% plan on restoring the cuts they made. Also:

• 75% cut expenses in other areas before they reduced their insurance.

• 42% of women who eliminated or decreased their coverage said they couldn’t afford it, compared with 23% of men.

• 27% of those who eliminated or decreased their insurance are putting that money toward groceries, 23% toward savings, 21% toward debt payments, and 15% toward housing costs.

• About one in five respondents said they spend $500 or more on monthly premiums.

• 58% of respondents don’t have dental insurance.

• 35% completely eliminated at least one policy.

• 31% reduced coverage.

• 15% of those whose jobs were unaffected by the pandemic cut a form of insurance coverage.

• 59% of those who lost their jobs or were furloughed completely eliminated at least one type of coverage.

• 56% reduced coverage after losing a job because of the pandemic.

• 13% of those whose employment was unaffected decreased their insurance.

Whether a policyholder did reduce or eliminate their insurance policy, ValuePenguin said, most would prefer not to. When asked which policy they would eliminate if they needed to cut costs, 26% said they wouldn’t eliminate any policy under any circumstance.

Beyond that, 15% were receptive to eliminating their dental insurance, 14% would get rid of their health insurance, and 12% were open to cutting their car insurance. Also, 46% said health insurance was the last thing they would cancel if they needed to cut costs.

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