Background: Dental insurance and income are positively associated with regular dental visiting. Higher income earners face fewer financial barriers to dental care, while dental insurance provides partial reimbursement. The aim was to explore whether household income has an effect on the relationship between insurance and visiting. Methods. A random sample of adults aged 30-61 years living in Australia was drawn from the Electoral Roll. Data were collected by mailed survey in 2009-10, including age, sex, dental insurance status and household income. Results: Responses were collected from n = 1,096 persons (response rate = 39.1%). Dental insurance was positively associated with regular visiting (adjusted prevalence ratio (PR) = 1.18; 95% CI: 1.01-1.36). Individuals in the lowest income tertile had a lower prevalence of regular visiting than those in the highest income group (PR = 0.78; 95% CI: 0.65-0.93). Visiting for a check-up was less prevalent among lower income earners (PR = 0.65; 95% CI: 0.50-0.83). Significant interaction terms indicated that the associations between insurance and visiting varied across income tertiles showing that income modified the effect. Conclusions: Household income modified the relationships between insurance and regular visiting and visiting for a check-up, with dental insurance having a greater impact on visiting among lower income groups.
- Dental visiting