Understanding NHS dental charges from April 2024

11th March 2024 | Posted by: Vanessa Giraud

Dentistry is one of the few NHS services where you have to pay a contribution towards the cost of your care. To help understand NHS dental charges each year, the information on this page explains what you may have to pay for your NHS dental treatment.

man having filling understanding NHS treatment charges

Also good to know:

Any treatment that your dentist believes is clinically necessary to achieve and maintain good oral health should be available on the NHS.

You will not be charged for individual items within an NHS course of treatment.

Depending on what you need to have done, you should only ever be asked to pay one charge for each completed course of treatment, even if you need to visit your dentist more than once to finish it.

A course of treatment is completed when the treatment listed in your treatment plan has been provided in full.

Most dentists provide both NHS and private dental treatment. Make sure you understand whether you are paying for NHS or private treatment, or a mixture of the two, before treatment begins.

Be aware that being repeatedly late for your treatment sessions or failure to attend appointments may result in the early termination of the course of treatment.

Treatments free of charge

You do not have to pay a dental charge if:

However, if it is not possible to repair your dentures and you need new ones then you’ll have to pay for these.

See more information on the cost of replacement dentures

You may also be exempt from NHS dental charges depending on your individual circumstances. The NHS Business Services Authority has an online tool that helps you check to see if you are exempt from NHS charges.

Not available on the NHS

The NHS will not provide cosmetic treatments, such as tooth whitening, which you may want to make your teeth more attractive, but are not clinically necessary.

If you get referred to another dentist

If you’re referred by your dentist for specialist NHS dental work as part of an existing course of treatment, you should only pay one charge.

However, if you are referred to another dentist, such as for a full course of treatment under sedation, then this is generally regarded as a separate course of treatment and you will have to pay a second charge. The amount you need to pay will depend on the treatment you need.

If you have completed a course of treatment and need more treatment

If you have completed one course of treatment but you need another treatment, you do not have to pay again if:

When to pay for your NHS treatment

Dental practices have different procedures. Following an assessment of your treatment needs, some dental practices may ask for the whole payment for your treatment up front, some will ask you to pay after it has all been completed and others may ask you to pay in stages. Check with your surgery when you go for your initial check-up.

You should not be asked to pay anything before an assessment of your treatment needs has been carried out.

List of dental treatments by band

All the treatment your dentist believes is clinically necessary to achieve and maintain good oral health is available on the NHS.

This means that the NHS provides any treatment you need to keep your mouth, teeth and gums healthy.

It does not include treatments that you might want for cosmetic reasons but that are not clinically necessary.

The following list of dental treatments is therefore not a comprehensive list of treatments that all patients are entitled to under NHS services provision.

For each individual course of treatment, a dentist will indicate the treatment options that are clinically appropriate for your circumstances and based on specific clinical judgement each time.

Band 1 course of treatment: £26.80

Band 2 course of treatment: £73.50

Band 3 course of treatment: £319.10

Source: The above information is taken from the NHS website (Understanding NHS dental charges).







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