Over 4.5m workers say they avoided a dental appointment because of time constraints, which includes problems taking time off work.
The research by Bupa, found a total of 2m people said they had not been to the dentist over the past 10 years, while 8.5m said they were waiting over two years between appointments.
Meanwhile a third of those surveyed – equating to some 21.5m people in the UK – said they had never visited a dental hygienist.
This survey coincides with Bupa revamping its dental insurance options for employers. The two products both have been redesigned to cover more preventative treatments, which members typically use most, including routine examinations, hygienist appointments and x-rays.
To support workers, over 300 Bupa practices are now open for extended hours during the week, with nearly 200 seeing patients at the weekend.
Bupa Dental Insurance director Steve Gates says: “Our research shows there are a number of barriers stopping employees looking after their oral health. We’ve updated our dental insurance plans, making it easier for businesses to support their workforce and to accommodate busy employees.”
He adds: “Bupa offers a range of options to access affordable dental treatments. While insurance can help further spread the cost, we’ve gone one step further introducing a new direct settlement process. This means customers aren’t left out of pocket as patients don’t need to pay up front before claiming the cost back.”
Bupa Dental Insurance can be used at any dentist. However, patients visiting a dentist within Bupa’s approved network – which includes Bupa dental practices, as well as non-Bupa sites – can get discounts off their dental treatment.