Dental Health Insurance No Waiting Period

Compare dental health insurance policies with no waiting period here through Savvy.

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, updated on July 6th, 2023       

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Health Insurance Banner

We’ve partnered with Compare Club to bring you a range of health insurance policies to help you compare them side by side.

Do you have a toothache and need dental care urgently? If so, you may be looking for a health insurance policy that includes dental care with no waiting periods, so you can make a claim for dental treatment right away. Luckily, when it comes to comparing policies, Savvy is here to help you out.

By considering health insurance policies with us, you’ll be able to see a range of quotes for health insurance from respected insurers side-by-side. Compare health insurance policies with us today, and make a start to get that toothache sorted right here through Savvy.

Can I find health insurance with no waiting periods for dental treatment?

Most health insurers impose a waiting period between when you first buy a private health insurance policy, and when you can make a claim. This is to prevent the possibility of expensive claims being made and the health insurance policy subsequently being cancelled, which could raise insurance premiums for everyone. Typically, waiting periods for dental treatment are between two and six months, though some may stretch this to as many as 12 months.

However, some health funds run special offers which include no waiting periods for select treatments as a way of attracting new customers. These offers on new extras policies, or a combined hospital and extras policy, can be a great way to get insurance for dental treatment with no waiting periods. For instance, some insurers may waive two to six-month waiting periods on extras policies for new customers, which may include some dental treatment.

It’s also worth bearing in mind that if you swap your current policy to one with another insurer offering a similar or lower level of cover, and you’ve already served your waiting periods, you may not have to serve any new wait times.

By comparing a range of health insurance policies through Savvy, you’ll be able to see the details of any special offers that are currently available, including extras policies which may come with no waiting periods for dental treatment.

What types of health insurance offer cover for dental treatment?

Dental treatment is divided into different categories, depending on the type and extent of treatment required. These are:

  • General dental treatment – which can cover preventative and routine dental treatment such as cleaning, polishing, scaling and minor fillings
  • Major dental treatment – which can include extractions, crowns, veneers, bridgework and dentures
  • Orthodontics – which includes treatments to alter the alignment of the teeth such as braces and aligners
  • Endodontics – which includes root canal work, and treatments on the tissues inside your teeth

The type of dental work you need, and which category that treatment falls under, will determine which type of health insurance may offer cover for the cost of the treatment.

Extras cover (also known as ancillary cover)

An extras cover policy can provide benefits for all categories of treatment received from dentists and oral specialists, as long as the treatment is provided in an out-of-hospital setting. An extras health policy will include a benefit allowance for each category of treatment which is covered.

This type of insurance is available in different levels, which can vary from one health fund provider to another. Most health funds offer a range of extras plans, with the benefits and annual limits increasing in line with the price of the policy. More expensive extras policies offer higher limits for each type of dental work. Cheaper extras policies may not offer cover for orthodontics or endodontics and may have lower limits for general dental work.

Hospital cover

A hospital cover policy can help with the cost of major dental treatment received while you’re an inpatient admitted to a hospital. This is usually for more serious dental surgery, which may be performed as day surgery. For example, if you require wisdom teeth to be removed, this may be performed under a general anaesthetic while you are admitted to a day surgery unit. A hospital cover policy might also cover your costs if you require jaw surgery to correct or replace misaligned or damaged teeth.

The Australian Government regulates the clinical categories which must be offered with the four levels of hospital cover which are available. These are:

  • Basic – the cheapest type of cover, offering cover for only three clinical categories
  • Bronze – which offers cover for an additional 18 clinical categories, but does not include dental surgery
  • Silver – offering cover for a further 29 clinical categories, including dental surgery
  • Gold – which covers all clinical categories, and offers the highest level of hospital cover available in Australia

Providing health cover for major dental work as a hospital in-patient is compulsory for all silver and gold tier hospital cover policies.

Medicare for dental emergencies

Medicare doesn’t generally cover the cost of non-urgent dental treatment for Australian adults. However, if you are involved in an accident or receive an injury which involves the mouth or teeth, you may receive urgent dental treatment through a public hospital emergency department, which may be covered by Medicare or a transport accident body such as TAC in Victoria. 

There are some Australians who can receive routine dental treatment through Medicare. Some examples include:

  • Children aged two to 17 years who are covered through the Child Dental Benefits Schedule. This includes children whose parents receive certain Centrelink benefits
  • Health Care Card holders
  • Commonwealth Seniors Health Care Card holders
  • DHS Pensioner Concession Card holders
  • Department of Veterans’ Affairs Card holders

How do I compare health insurance policies which cover dental treatment?

There are several areas to compare when looking at different health insurance policies. The differences are most pronounced with extras policies, as there are fewer regulations and mandatory areas of cover than there are with hospital cover policies.


The cost of your health insurance policy will depend on the type of health insurance you buy, and the level of cover you choose. The more coverage offered by a health policy, the more that policy is likely to cost. For example, a bronze hospital cover policy will cost less than a gold policy, but will also offer a far more limited range of treatments that are covered. Consider similar policies side-by-side to help you determine which can offer the most suitable coverage at the right cost.

Benefit levels

Health insurance helps cover a percentage of the cost of receiving health care treatment. The more expensive the policy, the higher percentage of the cost of treatment you may be able to claim back. For example, with a cheaper extras policy, you may be able to claim back 50% of your costs when you visit a dentist. However, if you have a more expensive policy, the percentage you’re able to claim back may rise to as high as 85% of the cost. Some health funds even offer 100% free basic dental treatment, which is provided by their network of private health providers.

Annual limits

Most insurers have annual limits that can be claimed for each extras category of treatment. For example, a cheaper extras policy may allow you to claim up to $500 a year for general dental, whereas a more expensive policy may allow $3,000 or more for this type of treatment. These limits reset either on January 1 or at the end of the financial year on July 1 each year, depending on which health fund you choose.

Special offers

The special offers available as a sweetener for new customers vary between health funds. Some of the special offers which may be available include:

  • Waived waiting periods – these may allow you to get certain dental treatments with no waiting period once you’ve paid your first premium on a new policy
  • Free weeks of cover, once a few months of premiums have been paid. For example, six weeks’ free cover after paying your premium for four months
  • Frequent flyer points awarded to customers who sign up for a new policy. For example, a set amount of points earned by policyholders who sign up before a certain date
  • Loyalty rewards and discounts – earn loyalty points which can be spent at major retailers and gain access to cheap movie tickets, for example
  • Free gift cards for new policyholders, such as those awarded to customers who take out a hospital and extras policy before the end of the financial year

Types of health insurance

Why compare health insurance through Savvy?

More questions about dental insurance with no waiting period

How long after I pay my health insurance premium can I make a claim?

If you take up a special offer which includes waived waiting periods on specific extras claims, you may be able to make a claim almost immediately once you’ve received your dental treatment. Buying a new health insurance policy is simple and easy when you do it through Savvy.

Is it easy to swap to a health fund with no waiting periods for dental cover?

Yes – you may be able to get a new policy with no waiting periods for some dental treatments sorted out quickly through Savvy. The process is:

  • Answer a few simple questions about the type of health insurance you’re after
  • Receive online quotes to help you compare policies
  • Choose which policy you prefer, or request a call back from a health insurance specialist to help you through the process
  • Complete your online application and pay for your policy
  • Receive phone assistance to complete your policy swap and transition smoothly from one health fund to another
Do dentists charge extra for an emergency appointment with no waiting period?

In general, dentists understand that toothaches really hurt! Most private practices will try to arrange treatment as soon as possible for patients who are in severe pain or require urgent treatment. There is usually no additional cost for dental treatment provided during an emergency appointment, although if you require urgent treatment after hours or at night there may be additional costs involved. If you’re unsure about this, speak with your dentist about when extra charges may apply.

How do I know if my dental treatment is going to come under the general or major dental category?

Ask your dentist prior to receiving treatment whether your treatment options come under major or general dental codes. Your dentist should be able to give you the item numbers and costs that apply to your treatment. You can give those item numbers and costs to your health insurer to find out how much you'll be able to claim back. 

Does dental health insurance cover dental implants?

Yes, dental implants can be covered by private health insurance. Implants come under the major dental category in extras policies, but often there is a 12-month waiting period before you can make a claim for implants. Benefit limits may also apply. 

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