Healthcare can be extremely costly if you don’t prepare for it. Certain costs can exceed your expectations of what you plan ahead for. It’s difficult to know what will become of your health as you age, making it impossible to predict how much you will spend on medical care. Before you’re caught off guard by these costs, be aware of what expenses could be lurking around the corner. Here are a few medical expenses to be aware of:
Going to the dentist for a routine visit is expensive and getting further work done is even more costly. Also, medicare doesn’t pay for dental services, so paying out of pocket can be a lot of money.
Many seniors give up dental care in order to get by on their fixed incomes. More than half of older Americans say they have not been to the dentist in the past year because of high costs. Some people are covered by employer-sponsored health insurance, but after they stop working shocked to learned those expenses will now be out of pocket.
It’s unfortunate because seniors typically lose their dental coverage when they need it the most. Aging takes a toll on the teeth and gums, such as gum tissue naturally receding, exposing roots to decay, and wearing down tooth enamel. About 1 in 5 Americans age 65 or older have untreated cavities, and 2 in 3 have gum disease, according to the National Center for Health Statistics.
Forgoing dental care can have serious long-term consequences. Poor oral health affects your ability to speak, eat healthy foods and feel confident in how you look. More importantly, perhaps, taking good care of your teeth can decrease your risk of serious problems such as heart attack, stroke and poorly controlled diabetes.
As the eyes age it’s important to have your vision checked regularly. Having the right prescription and proper glasses can prevent risks, such as falls and accidents. Medicare won’t cover the costs of a routine visit, so that’s another cost covered on your own.
Although, Medicare will cover the diagnosis and treatment of eye diseases, trauma, or injury. For example, If you’re at risk for glaucoma then Medicare will cover your annual screening. If you develop cataracts, Medicare will pay for your surgery plus corrective eyeglasses needed post-treatment. Although most of it will be covered there is still a deductible and coinsurance that will still apply, so prepare yourself for those expenses as well.
Medicare Advantage will typically cover routine vision care. You’ll need to weigh the cost of an Advantage plan against your costs under original Medicare to see what makes the most sense.
One of the most common things people wonder about as they start to approach age 65 is Medicare coverage for hearing aids. This is because hearing aids can be very pricey. Not only are the actual hearing aids themselves costly, but the tests and exams required to determine need of the hearing aids.
Medicare does not cover hearing aids, routine hearing exams, or the exams for fitting hearing aids. This leaves a big hole in your health coverage should you just accept this fact. Fortunately, there are alternatives and supplements to Medicare insurance. However, not all of these will provide you with the coverage you need, either.
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