The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality conducts an annual national survey tracking healthcare utilization and expenses. The Medical Expenditure Panel Survey allows us to compare annual dental expenses and dental visits for sub-populations such as race/ethnicity, age, income, and payer source. Illinois data are available from 1996-2015.
Consistently 38%-49% of Illinoisans have been visiting the dentist annually for each of the past 20 years.
High-income individuals are more than twice as likely to visit the dentist as low-income individuals.
Poor individuals with a dental expense spend on average $300 more on dental services each year than high-income individuals.