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March 29, 2010

Should Canada have Free Basic Dental Care?

CANADA/HEALTH - What did Pharoah Amenhotep III, Queen Elizabeth I of England and John Glascock of the rock band Jethro Tull all have in common?

They all died from bad teeth.

Yet Canada, with its incredible free health care system, does not yet have free dental care for Canadian citizens.

Thus unless you have a dental plan at the place you work, getting dental care is going to be pretty expensive and simply not possible for many impoverished Canadians.

Canada does have free basic dental care for children and seniors, but adults are vastly ignored by the system. (Native Canadians also get free basic dental care, as do wards of the state.)

There are some rare dentists who will give free dental care to people in need, including immigrants or the children of immigrants. If you're looking for a Toronto dentist you can try calling the Toronto Academy of Dentistry at 416-967-5649.

If you live somewhere else in Ontario you can call 416-922-3900 or use the Find-a-Dentist search at youroralhealth.ca/index.php/Find-A-Dentist.html

In theory you could also go on your local Craigslist or Kijiji and try to barter for dental care, offering anything from grass cutting to business phones, Toronto party rentals or even geothermal installation... it really depends what your business is.

However in my experience barter isn't really an effective way of trading services. A better solution is to set aside a budget for your dental needs and whenever you have enough schedule a visit to the dentist. In theory people are supposed to visit the dentist at least twice a year... so depending on your financial situation this could be pretty hard to do.

You can also get free or half price dental care from dentistry schools. ie. Toronto Dental Services

However if free basic dental care was available from the government this wouldn't be an issue. I recommend contacting your local Canadian MPs or the Health Minister and harassing them on the issue. If enough Canadians complain and make it an issue the government might agree in an effort to prove their serious about improving public health and garner votes.

See Also:
dentistryfromtheheart.org


BENEFITS OF FREE DENTAL CARE

1. Higher employment rates. (Would you want to hire someone with bad teeth?)

2. Lower suicide rates. (People with bad teeth frequently have trouble finding work, romance and suffer from depression.)

3. Overall better health. (The government would save money in the future by having a healthier populace.)

4. Higher marriage and birth rates. (People with good teeth are more likely to get married and have children.)

5. Less stress. (People who aren't worried about their teeth are more productive, less likely to be involved in road rage and any number of dubious activities.)

6. More money. (People and companies that no longer have to worry about dental care costs will have more money to spend on other things, thus boosting the economy.)

BAD TEETH CAN KILL YOU. DON'T IGNORE YOUR TEETH! HARASS YOUR MP OR THE HEALTH MINISTER AND PUSH FOR FREE BASIC DENTAL CARE.

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