15 Ways to Get Financial Assistance for Dental Work

One in five Americans puts off getting dental care because of the cost. But avoiding the dentist can have grave consequences. From living with chronic tooth pain to even dying from a simple cavity, getting the dental care you need is crucial for your health. Thankfully, it’s possible to get financial assistance for dental work. Discover information about financial aid for dental work to restore your confidence in your smile.

15 Financial Assistance Options for Dental Work

Financial assistance from dental grants can fund the whole or part of the costly dental procedures. But they often come with strict rules and limits. Always read the application instructions carefully to make sure you qualify.

1. Dental Discount Plans

Dental discount plans are an alternative to regular dental insurance. You can save money on dental care with a dental savings plan by paying a single monthly fee and receiving savings on your dental care procedures.

After signing up, you can visit participating dental providers nationwide and get discounts on dental care ranging from 15% to 50%*  per visit in most instances.

2. Dental Health Foundation's Cosmetic Dentistry Grant (CDG) Project

Oral Aesthetic Advocacy Group, Inc. (OAAG) owns the Cosmetic Dentistry Grants (CDG) Project. This nonprofit began in 2010 and consists of dentists researching, sharing information, and helping people finance their dental care.

CDG provides financial assistance for cosmetic dental care to those who qualify.

3. The American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD)

The American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry helps women who have overcome domestic violence by providing them with dental care. The foundation does this through the Give Back a Smile program.

If you live in the United States or Canada, you may be eligible for full coverage of the expenses of treating dental injuries.

The Cosmetic Dentistry Grants Program can help with the cost of dental implants if you qualify for funding. However, you must get a dental exam to determine if your mouth is healthy enough to hold the implant.

4. Dental Life Network

The Dental Life Network is a national non-profit organization that provides financial assistance for dental work. The network consists of volunteer dentists and labs that cater to adults who can’t afford dental care.

To be eligible, you need to be over 65 years old, permanently disabled, or need medically necessary dental care but can’t pay for it.

They also collaborate with other organizations in different states. For example, they sponsor a  Donated Dental Services (DDS) initiative.

5. Free Dentist Care (DDS)

Through the Donated Dental Services (DDS) initiative, dentists can help people on a low income who can't pay for dental care or don't qualify for public aid but still need it.

Together, the Foundation and Dental Lifeline Network in Florida sponsor a Donated Dental Services (DDS) program. 

If you’re living with a disability, old, or clinically vulnerable and cannot pay for or get public assistance for dental care, you can access DDS's free dental services.

6. United Way

The United Way has several dental clinics in different locations in the US. You can receive dental care free of charge or at a reduced cost. Simply visit their website and search for a participating dental clinic in your community.

7. Dentaid

Dentaid is a charity that aims to provide dental care to those who can’t afford or access it. They provide dental surgery and other procedures.

The foundation also supports licensed dentists in deprived areas with Dentaid boxes. They can then use these boxes to provide members of their communities with dental care.

8. America’s Dentists Care Foundation, Missions of Mercy (ADCFMOM)

America’s Dentists Care Foundation provides financial assistance for dental work by facilitating dental clinics nationwide. These dental clinics provide dental care procedures at little or no cost.

The foundation collaborates with other not-for-profits and state or local organizations to deliver oral care to individuals and families who can’t afford it.

9. 0% APR Credit Card

A 0% APR (Annual Percentage Rate) credit card charges no interest for new purchases, balance transfers, or both. The No Interest feature is usually valid for an introductory period, the first 6-20 months, depending on the company.

With this type of credit card, you can pay for dental procedures within the introductory period without incurring an interest rate.

After the intro period expires, your interest rate returns to normal, and you want to ensure you’re not carrying a balance.

10. Dental Loans

Dental loans are personal loans you can get to pay for dental work while you pay back over time. Dental loans are typically unsecured with no collateral tied to them. However, this usually means they attract a higher interest than secured loans.

According to Forbes, the top 5 dental loan companies are:

Companies like Credit Karma and Opportun can also help finance dental procedures even if you have bad and no credit.

11. Negotiating With Your Dentist

It’s worth negotiating your dental bill with your dentist; you just might get some dollars off. You can decide to do this before or after your procedure. You’d be surprised that your dentist is used to negotiating their prices, but only if you initiate the conversation.

Ensure you find out what other dentists in your area charge for the same procedure. This will inform your negotiation. You may also pay upfront in exchange for an additional reduction in your bill.

12. CareCredit

CareCredit is a credit card for medical care, and you can use it to pay for dental care not covered by insurance. You can take advantage of its No Interest feature, which allows you to avoid incurring any interest if you pay within a specified period.

Many dental clinics accept CareCredit, and you only need to ask your dentist if they do. You must be 18 years old to be eligible for CareCredit.

13. Fundraising Websites

Crowdfunding has helped countless people deal with the high cost of dental procedures. Your story may strike a chord with others so strongly that even strangers feel compelled to give.

Some fundraising websites you can use to crowdfund your dental procedure include:

Here are some guidelines for medical fundraising that can help you make the most of your efforts:

  • Organize a physical fundraiser, such as a barbecue or a car wash, to rally your loved ones behind your cause and raise money for it. Such gatherings are ideal for soliciting support because of their informal atmosphere.
  • Create a buzz about your fundraising effort by posting it on social networking sites.
  • Keep your fundraising page updated regularly, and let donors know how you plan to spend the money.

14. Community Dental Care Centers

If you’re eligible, you can go to one of the many dental clinics the Health Resources and Services Administration has set up nationwide. 

Depending on your income and the services available, you can get help with some dental care services. 

15. Dental Colleges

Both dentistry colleges and public medical centers have access to national dental aid programs. This allows them to provide dental care at reduced costs.

Check out the American Dental Education Association's database of approved programs to find a dental school near you.

How Much Dental Procedures Cost With and Without Carefree Dental

*Per visit, in most instances on services at any of the many available dental practice locations. Actual costs and savings may vary by provider, service and geographical location. We use the average of negotiated fees from participating providers to determine the average costs, as shown on the chart. The select regional average cost represents the average fees for the procedures listed above in Los Angeles, Orlando, Chicago and New York City, as displayed in the cost of care tool as of June 2020.

Budget-Friendly Plan for Dental Care

A Carefree Dental membership can save you 15-50%* per visit in most instances on dental visits with a participating provider. 

You can save money on dental treatment, with programs starting at just $15.95 per month if you’re single and $19.95 per month for families.

Sign up for a Carefree Dental card today and get discounts on all your dental care.



*Actual costs and savings vary by provider, service, and geographical area.

The Carefree Dental blog is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. The text and pictures within the content are intended for information purposes only. Readers should consult with a licensed dentist or healthcare professional before seeking treatment.

The Carefree Dental Card is not insurance, and Carefree Dental is not an insurance provider.

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