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Find out about NHS dental charges and whether you are eligible for free dental treatment.

First published:
22 September 2020
Last updated:

Entitlement to free NHS dental examinations and treatment

You get free dental examinations if you are:

  • aged under 25 
  • aged 60 or over

Any subsequent treatment as a result of the free examination carries the appropriate charge.

You can get free NHS dental treatment if when the treatment starts you:

  • are aged under 18
  • are aged 18 and in full time education
  • are pregnant or have had a baby within the 12 month before treatment starts
  • are an NHS in-patient and the treatment is carried out by the hospital dentist
  • are an NHS Hospital Dental Service out-patient (there may be a charge for dentures and bridges)

You are also entitled to free dental treatment if when the treatment starts or when the charge is made:

  • you or your partner receive certain benefits
  • you are on a low income, read Low Income Scheme
  • you are entitled to, or named on, a valid NHS tax credit exemption certificate

You can use the NHS online checker to see if you are entitled to help.

NHS dental charges

If you normally pay for NHS dental treatment, there will be three standard charges.

The amount you pay will depend on the treatment you need to keep your teeth and gums healthy.

You will pay one of the three charges below:

Band Treatment Charge
1

This charge will include an examination, diagnosis and preventative care.  If necessary this will include:

  • X-rays
  • oral health advice
  • planning for further treatment

Urgent and out-of-hours care will also cost £14.70 and may include pain relief, repairs to fillings, inlays or a temporary filling.

£14.70
2

This charge includes all necessary treatment covered by the £14.70 charge plus:

  • additional fillings
  • root canal treatments
  • extractions
  • periodontal treatment (for gum disease)
£47.00
3

This charge includes all necessary treatment covered by the £14.70 and £47.00 charges plus more complex procedures such as:

  • crowns
  • dentures
  • bridges
£203.00

You will only pay one charge even if you need to visit more than once to complete a course of treatment.  

If you are referred to another dentist, you will still pay one charge (to the dentist who refers you).

If you need more treatment at the same charge level (e.g. an additional filling) within two months of seeing your dentist, this will be free of charge.

You should ask your dentist how much your individual treatment plan will cost.  The dental practice may ask you to pay before beginning your treatment.

There will be no charge if a dentist assesses that he only needs to issue a prescription, or if he removes stitches from a previous procedure.

Your dentist should display a poster about NHS charges in the waiting room.

Claim a refund for NHS dental charges

Use this form to claim a refund for dental charges if you are entitled to help with healthcare costs.  Use the NHS online checker to see if you qualify.

You can request a printed copy of this form via email or by calling the publications order line on 0345 603 1108.

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