Compare BC's Best Dental Insurance (2023) (2023)

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James updated on 2022-10-28



Do you incorporate routine dental care into your normal health checkups? It is something that many of us neglect, but preventative dental care can help prevent diseases such as gum disease which can lead to greater health problems.

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While Canadians are eligible to receive universal healthcare through the province they reside in, routine and basic dental services are usually not covered through provincial plans.

Our guide will answer your questions about public and private dental care in BC. Find out what you need to know to pick the right private insurance plan for you.

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How do I purchase private dental insurance in BC?

According to the Canadian Dental Association, nearly 94% of dental spending in Canada is covered by a private dental insurance plan. Private dental care can generally be covered under a private health insurance plan but you can also find dental-only plans. However, we always recommend private health and dental plan to make sure you are covered for whatever life may throw your way.

In order to purchase a health and dental insurance plan in BC, speak to a broker or agent as they can help assess your needs within your budget. Alternatively, you can use our comparison tool to see what plans and providers are available.

What services are covered under a private dental plan?

Private dental plans typically offer basic and comprehensive coverage policies.

A basic dental insurance policy will typically offer basic services like routine cleaning and tooth maintenance along with some minor procedures like simple tooth extraction.

Basic Dental Services

  • oral examinations, x-rays
  • polishing, fluoride treatments
  • fillings
  • scaling and root planing
  • repairs
  • routine extractions

A comprehensive dental plan will typically cover more complex procedures as well well aesthetic, non-essential services like orthodontics.

Comprehensive Dental Services

  • root canals
  • gum treatment
  • braces
  • oral surgery
  • crowns
  • bridges
  • dentures and repairs

How much does a private dental insurance plan cost in BC?

A couple in BC insured with Blue Cross could expect to spend $80 per month for dental coverage. Keep in mind the average cost of private dental in BC depends on how many people are insured on your plan, what the plan offers and the provider.

See the chart below to get an idea of what you can expect to pay for the 2022-2023 policy year. Note that rates may increase over time and with the age of the policyholder:

Premium frequencySingleCoupleFamily
Monthly premium$39$80$129
Annual premium$439$908$1474

To compare plans and providers to make sure you are getting the best dental coverage for your needs, check out our comparison tool here:

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How much do dental services cost in BC?

The cost of dental care in BC will entirely depend on what you have done and how invasive the procedure is.

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If you get a dental cleaning in Vancouver, BC, the price for adults ranges widely from as little to $180 to more than $485 depending on the time it takes to complete and whether there is fluoride treatment or whitening.

For children in Vancouver, the price for a dental visit can range from $50 to $285. This may include services such as complete exams, x-rays, and dental cleaning and polishing.

We have added a chart to show the average costs of more comprehensive services such as dental implants and crowns. As you can see the cost of dental crowns or dental implants in BC can be a big out-of-pocket expense.

Dental ServiceAnticipated Cost
Dental Implants
  • $4000 to $5000 per replacement tooth
  • $25 000 to $30 000 per jaw.
Dental Crown
  • $1000 to $2000
  • $75 up to $300

Take a look at the BC dental fee guide for 2022.

Dental Fee Guide BC


You can see that the cost of dental care in BC can quickly become quite significant. Even a basic dental cleaning in BC can add up. A private dental insurance plan could help either avoid completely or eliminate a good majority of the out-of-pocket costs.

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Are dental services covered under MSP BC?

A very limited amount of dental services for adults are covered under the BC provincial plan. Services covered under MSP BC are as follows:

  • Dental and oral surgery only when medically required to be performed in a hospital and excluding restorative services such as root canals, fillings, caps and crowns
  • Orthodontic services related to severe congenital facial abnormalities.

The removal of healthy wisdom teeth is not covered under MSP BC. Surgical removal of impacted wisdom teeth is covered by MSP insured service only when hospitalization is medically required.

Basic and preventative dental care is not covered under MSP. These services are however covered under private dental plans. You can start comparing offers on dental insurance in BC above or continue reading below to learn more.

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Is there low-income dental assistance in BC?

If you receive income or disability assistance, you may be eligible for low-income dental assistance.

If you are an adult and are eligible for general health supplements, receive disability assistance or qualify as a person with barriers, you would be eligible for basic dental coverage.

The basic dental coverage you and your spouse would be eligible to receive:

  • Routine dental services including restorations, extractions and preventative services
  • Partial dentures including replacement dentures or reline/re-base of dentures
  • Crowns and bridges (however they will only be covered under certain circumstances)

If you receive any kind of income assistance and have had your complete upper and/or lower teeth removed in the previous six months to relieve pain, then you may also be eligible for dentures under the low-income dental assistance program.

Dental assistance for low-income seniors in British Columbia?

BC does not offer a specific low-income dental assistance program for seniors. However, those receiving general health benefits, disability assistance or who qualify as a person with multiple barriers, could be eligible for the same basic dental services that all low-income adults are eligible to receive.

Is there low-income dental assistance for children in BC?

Low-income dental benefits are also available to children of those receiving assistance. Eligible children under the age of 19, can:

  • receive up to $2000 over two calendar years, beginning January 1 each odd-numbered year.
  • up to $1000 per year to cover the cost of dental treatment performed in a hospital under a general anesthetic.

How does the BC children’s hospital dental work?

BC Children’s Hospital provides preventive dental care and oral health diagnoses', as well as treatment for infants and medically compromised children. Surgical treatment under general anesthesia is also offered for pediatric patients who need specialized surgical care.

The BC children’s hospital dental service is offered to children aged 4 and under with severe tooth decay and to children aged 17 and under with compromising medical conditions. This requires a referral from a dentist.

Good to know

Services not covered by MSP BC, the BC children’s hospital dental program or without a private dental insurance plan, you would be responsible for paying for

Ask a question,an expert will respond

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on 2022-07-18

Looking Dental insurance

Compare BC's Best Dental Insurance (2023) (2) James Our expert

Hi Tes,
You can use our dental insurance comparison tool to find the best offer for you.

Have a nice day,
The HelloSafe team


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