Treatments available as an NHS patient

Once registered as an NHS patient, you have access to any treatment, advice, and care you need to keep your teeth, mouth and gums as healthy as possible. Your dentist will explain which treatments are available on the NHS and which are private.

Treatments that you may receive on the NHS include:

Generally, cosmetic procedures will need to be paid for privately.

Preventative care programme for adults

Adults are offered a treatment plan which includes an enhanced clinical examination. You’ll then receive any further treatments to maintain and improve your oral health.

To ensure the best possible care, it’s important that you attend appointments as recommended by your dentist.

During your dental check-up, you may be asked about any changes to your medical history, medication or any new allergies. You’ll also be asked about any changes you have noticed, such as lumps or bumps, or if you are having any specific problems. You may also be asked if you smoke or drink alcohol and, if so, how much.

After they’ve established how your general health is, they’ll do the following:

  • Examine your mouth, including your teeth, gums and tongue.
  • Advise you on how you can keep your mouth healthy.
  • Explain any treatments you may need – if you do need dental treatment; they’ll advise you of your options, including what treatments can be carried out on the NHS.
  • Explain any treatment cost.

Childsmile programme

Dental practices can provide preventative care as part of the Childsmile programme for children up to 17 years of age.

Maintaining good oral health depends on a good diet, regular tooth brushing and intervention from the dental practice. The good habits and preventative care learned through the Childsmile programme need to be maintained in older children and delivered in dental practices.

Who gets free treatment on the NHS?

You can get free dental treatment if you’re:

  • Aged under 26
  • Pregnant or have given birth in the last 12 months
  • On a low income and receive certain benefits

Please take evidence of any exemption with you to the dentist.

Around 40% of all patients, including children, are exempt from paying the cost of their NHS dental care.

NHS Low Income Scheme

You may be entitled to dental treatment at a further reduced cost through the NHS Low Income Scheme (LIS). The LIS is designed to provide help with NHS charges for those who are not automatically entitled to free treatment but have difficulty paying.

This scheme is income-related and based on your financial circumstances.

Find out if you are eligible for free or n reduced-cost NHS dental treatment.

What is prior approval?

Your dentist may inform you that they have to apply for prior approval before your treatment can be started. Dentists are required to seek approval from the NHS NSS Practitioner Services for certain treatments and treatments of high value. This process may take a little time and delay your treatment slightly.

Are all treatments available on the NHS?

Not all treatments are available on the NHS. Cosmetic treatments are not available, for example. This includes ‘white fillings’ on back teeth or a tooth-coloured crown on a back tooth.

Your dentist will be able to explain what treatment is and isn’t allowed on the NHS.

Dental treatment costs

An NHS dental examination (check-up) in Scotland is free of charge for everyone.

Following a dental examination, the dentist will advise you of any treatment you require and the likely cost. They must also provide an itemised account if requested.

NHS patients, who pay for their treatment, pay 80% of the treatment costs (including any X-rays), up to a maximum of £384. Any costs over this maximum will be fully subsidised by the NHS. You’ll never pay more than £384.

A dentist can ask for payment in advance. They can also charge a patient if they fail to attend an appointment without giving due notice.

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General Dentistry

We offer an amazing array of general dental services.

Learn More

Cosmetic Dentistry

Minimally invasive treatment, life-altering results.

Learn More

Dental Implants

Dental implants – blending naturally with your teeth.

Learn More

Advanced Dentistry

A dental practice where your best interests are always considered.

Learn More

Oral Surgery

Restore your smile and confidence.

Learn More

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