NHS dentistry

NHS Dentistry - Treatments and Costs

NHS dental treatment offers oral health care for all, irrespective of income. Costs are allocated into 3 different bandings and the amount that you pay will depend on the treatment that you receive. There is only one charge for a full course of treatment even if you need a number of visits to complete the treatment. If you are referred to another dentist for additional treatment, you may be charged separately for this.

Band 1 - £20.60

Band 1 covers basic but essential treatment

  • Examinations, including x-rays and diagnosis
  • Urgent treatment
  • Essential scale and polish (not cosmetic)
  • Fissure sealant and fluoride treatment
  • Oral hygiene advice for preventative care

Band 2 - £56.30

All treatments in band 1 are covered, plus the addition of the following

  • Root canal treatment
  • Dental fillings (non cosmetic)
  • Teeth extraction

Band 3 - £244.30

Includes all treatments in bands 1 and 2 plus the following

  • Dentures
  • Dental crown
  • Bridges

Are you entitled to free NHS dental treatment?

If you meet one or more of the criteria listed below when your dental treatment commences, you will be entitled to free NHS dental treatment:

  • Aged under 18
  • Aged under 19 and in qualifying full time education
  • Are currently pregnant or have had a child in the previous 12 months
  • If you are receiving treatment by the hospital dentist whilst an inpatient
  • If you are an NHS hospital outpatient for dental treatment. Note; you may have to pay for dentures or bridges.
  • If you, or your partner (including civil partners) receive the following, or if you are younger than 20 and are dependent on someone who is receiving:
    • Income Support
    • Income-based Jobseeker's Allowance
    • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
    • Pension Credit Guarantee Credit
    • Universal Credit and meet the criteria

If you are entitled to or are named on:

A valid NHS tax credit exemption certificate – if you do not have this, you may show your award notice; you qualify if you get Child Tax Credits, Working Tax Credits with a disability element (or both) and have an income for tax credit purposes of £15,276 or less

Anyone  named on an NHS certificate for partial help with health costs (HC3) may also receive help.

You are not exempt from payment because of a medical condition or are in receipt of one of the benefits named below, when paid on their own.

  • Incapacity Benefit
  • Contribution-based Employment and Support Allowance,
  • Contribution-based Jobseeker's Allowance
  • Disability Living Allowance
  • Council Tax Benefit
  • Housing Benefit
  • Pension Credit Savings Credit


Your dentist will need to see written proof that you don’t have to pay for all or part of your NHS treatments. You will also be requested to sign a form to confirm this.  Falsely claiming free NHS dental treatment may result in a penalty charge notice which can include the cost of the dental treatment plus a penalty charge of up to £100. Prosecution and a possible criminal record may follow.

NHS Low Income Scheme (LIS)

If you are on a low income, you may be entitled to either full or partial assistance with your healthcare costs, which includes dental treatments. You can apply for this if your savings, investments or property (excluding the place where you live) do not exceed the capital limit. Currently, in England, this limit is £16,000 or £23,250 for those who are permanent residents in a care home. Any help that you are entitled to is also available to your partner and any dependent young people.

In some circumstances, you may receive ‘full help’ (HC2 certificate) or ‘partial’ help (HC3 certificate). Eligibility rules are similar to those for a means tested benefit. However, your council tax and housing costs are also taken into account. Therefore, even if your income is too high for a means tested benefit, you may still be able to get help with your health costs.

To apply for a certificate, a HC1 form will need to be completed. This is available at our dental practice or can be downloaded from the internet. For more information about this scheme and how you can apply, the NHS Business Services Authority (NHSBSA) website is an excellent resource.

NHS Dental care for students

Students who are in full time education and who are under 19 years old are automatically entitled to receive help with their health costs (excluding travel costs, in which case you may apply to the Low Income Scheme)

Those students who are aged 19 or older and entering higher education are generally considered to have access to their own financial resources and are not classed as dependent children. They can, however, still apply to the Low Income Scheme by using the HC1 Form to find out if they qualify for help.

41 Broomfield Road,

Chelmsford, CM1 1SY

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