Dental care in Australia
According to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, approximately 64% of Australians over the age of 4 visited a dentist in 2009.
That may seem like a low number for an advanced country, but not when you know the price of dental care.
Dental care is not subsidised by the government in Australia unless you have a chronic medical condition, such as cancer or diabetes.
Average cost for dental treatment
The average cost of a check up, clean, and 2 x-rays is approximately $220, with a crown costing between $780-1,600. However, these costs tend to be higher in the cities.
Private dental cover
As dental treatment can be quite expensive, it is a good idea to have private health insurance to minimise costs. Most health plans include dental cover. Be warned, the plans only cover part if the full cost. Shop around for the most competetive offer based on your needs.
Many health insurers such as HCF and NIB have their own dental centres, which provide free or subsidised treatment for members.
Child Dental Benefits Schedule
The Australian Government's Child Dental Benefits Schedule provides each child aged 2 to 17 years with $1,000 per child to be used over 2 consecutive calendar years. If the $1,000 benefit is not fully used in the first year, the remainder can be used in the second year if the child is still eligible. The full $1000 must all be used within the 2 years.
The benefit covers services including check-ups, x-rays, and fillings.