Best Private Dental Insurance | What is it and how much does it cost?


With dental health insurance, you can get the million dollar smile you’ve always dreamed of without having to pay an arm and a leg.

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Going to the dentist usually isn’t as bad as you might think – until the bill arrives.

Despite one of the highest rates of tooth decay in the world, statistics from SmileDirectClub show that almost a quarter of Australians have postponed dental treatment because of the cost.

Dental insurance can provide peace of mind for those concerned about the cost of dental care.

Although the public health care system provides wholesale billed dentists, they are often only available to concession card holders, and waiting lists last for months.

If you’re looking for a new dental health insurance policy or a better deal, here’s everything you need to know.

How does dental insurance work and what is covered?

Dental coverage is divided into two categories: general dental care and major dental care. Each category has its own annual payment limit, which varies depending on the insurance provider.

General dental care includes exams, fillings, scaling and cleaning, and x-rays. Major dental care includes root canal, crowns and bridges, surgical removal of teeth such as wisdom teeth, dentures, and implants.

“The funds will generally pay a proportion of the standard service charge. Benefits vary by fund, with most covering an average of 50-60% of the fees charged, ”a spokesperson for Private Healthcare Australia told

The dental costs themselves vary widely. According to the 2019 Australian Dental Association survey of dental practitioners, the average cost for a regular exam is around $ 215, with $ 156 at the bottom of the range and $ 296 at the top.

“Under the Australian Dental Association schedule, there is no set fee for specific treatments, as costs vary depending on experience, how difficult the procedure is, the ‘where the clinician gets their raw materials and where the dentist is,’ said Eithne Irving. , Deputy Managing Director, Australian Dental Association.


What Should You Look For When Choosing The Best Dental Insurance?

Just as the prices of dental services vary, the amounts of the discounts from private health funds also vary.

While there are plans that cover 100 percent of a regular dental checkup, discounts may be lower for major dental work. For example, the average cost of a full crown is $ 1,573 and the average benefit paid is $ 672, or 23.6%.

Many funds impose a 12-month waiting period to access major dental benefits, and payment amounts generally have an annual cap.

Private Healthcare Australia said it is important to consider how you will be using dental coverage.

“Look at what you might need, such as regular checkups, and rest assured for big ticket items you hope you never need,” the spokesperson said.

“When choosing a fund, look for no-gap monitoring services and specific coverage limits. “

Some funds partner with dental clinics or operate their own clinics, and in these cases, reimbursable expenses are capped.


Is dental coverage worth it?

If you are concerned about the cost of dental health insurance, it is important to determine if you will get the most out of the premium you are paying.

Are your teeth healthy enough that you can afford the dentist yourself? Or would you rather have the safety net of insurance to cover any unforeseen costs?

“Regarding additional policies which include dental care, physiotherapy, optometry and other natural therapies, the Australian Dental Association believes that they are generally not good value for money,” said Mrs. Irving said.

“The discounts paid are well below the average processing costs, and for some policies, the discounts have not increased for many years, let alone keep pace with inflation.”


“Prevention is the best dental treatment”

“Prevention is the best insurance for oral health,” said Ms. Irving.

“Brushing twice a day with fluoridated toothpaste, cleaning between teeth daily with dental floss, following a low-sugar diet and seeing a dentist regularly will avoid the need for extra dental coverage. “

It’s worth shopping around, however, if one is considering purchasing additional coverage, as not all funds are created equal.

For anyone who chooses not to have dental coverage, it is important to set a budget to save a regular amount in case expensive treatment is required.

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