In Germany, public health insurance also covers some dental services but not all of them, and not to the full extent. Many costs must be paid by patients if they don’t have additional dental insurance. If you want a higher-quality or more aesthetic treatment, be prepared to pay for it.
The average cost of dental care in Germany:
- Dental examination: 80 EUR
- Profesional cleaning: 80 – 150 EUR
- Tooth filling: 60 – 200 EUR
- Root canal: 400 EUR
- Dental crown: 250 – 700 EUR
- Implants: 3,000 EUR
- Braces: 1,500 EUR
Depending on the type of treatment and the material costs of dental care in Germany can vary from 100 EUR to several thousand EUR. Having health insurance is indeed helpful when visiting a dental office in Germany.
But more so, you will benefit from dental insurance that covers most stomatological services one might need. Furthermore, dental coverage is incredibly cheap – starting from 5 EUR per month.
How much does dental cost in Germany?
Dental care can be very affordable and very expensive in Germany. Here several factors play a role, the most important of which is the scope of your health insurance coverage and the type of treatment you are receiving.
Generally, the cost of visiting a dentist in Germany is based on the following structure:
- the dentist’s fee
- the laboratory and material costs
Dentist fee is often the most significant part of the bill because labor cost is very high in Germany. Also, the complexity of the treatment plays a role. Simple teeth cleaning won’t cost you much.
Generally, German dentists won’t charge a patient more than determined in the official price list. It’s regulated by the state to keep dental expenses under control for everyone.
It’s called the BEMA (Bewertungsmaßstab für zahnärztliche Leistungen), and it states what kind of dental treatment and in what percentage will be covered by the health insurance company and how much the patient might pay out of pocket.
However, this guideline only applies to someone with public health insurance.
When billing for private services (outside of the public health insurance scope), the dentist will use GOZ or a guideline for dentists in Germany. He isn’t allowed to charge more than prescribed in this document.
These rates apply to someone with private health insurance and without insurance at all. You can see all details of prices in this document yourself.
Overall, dental care in Germany is considered expensive, mainly due to the recent cuts in health insurance coverage. It’s always worthwhile to have separate dental insurance for any dental treatment.
Alternatively, you can visit some eastern European countries for lower prices on dental care e.g., Ukraine, Belarus, Balkans. Don’t forget the additional costs you will encounter, such as travel and hotel expenses.
Some general dental costs in Germany:
|Root canal treatment||700 EUR|
|Bridges||700 to 1,600 EUR|
|Composite fillings||200 EUR|
|Ceramic crowns||600 EUR|
|Implants||2,000 to 4,000 EUR|
What pays your health insurance?
In Germany, public health insurance covers the costs of medically necessary dental treatment. However, the prices for additional services, e.g. aesthetic or which don’t have medical benefit must be paid by the insured person.
Furthermore, health insurance usually covers all standard dental procedures with basic materials. There is some limited scope of services and their frequency which are paid for by the insurance company. Sometimes a patient contributes a part of it, sometimes it is paid by insurance in full.
Before any serious treatment (above 500 EUR), a dentist will issue a treatment plan with approximate costs. You can send it to your health insurance to make sure what percentage will be covered. This applies to public and private insurance companies.
The standard covered dental treatments include basic fillings, dental cleaning, annual check-ups, etc. Other procedures, such as extra cleaning measures and more expensive fillings, for example, ceramic inlays, may need to be paid by the patient.
More complicated and advanced treatments could be also paid for by health insurance, but it all depends on the individual case. Plus, it depends on your insurance as well.
For example, dental insurances cover most costs, but general statutory health insurance rarely does. Particularly when it comes to cosmetic treatments or dental services like implants, brackets, etc.
For example, a good implant may cost around 3,000 EUR per tooth. Public insurance might pay a few hundred EUR for that treatment. Private insurance companies will cover a larger part, up to 100% in some cases.
Read more about dental coverage of German health insurance.
Dental insurance in Germany
Read a detailed review on insurance from Feather.
Cost of dental filling
Some dental fillings are covered by public health insurance some aren’t. Patients have a choice when it comes to dental fillings: amalgam and composite fillings.
The statutory (public) health insurance (GKV) covers the costs for the standard treatment: composite fillings in the front, visible tooth area, and amalgam fillings in the posterior tooth area. Composite fillings are BPA-free, non-toxic, and completely safe.
The posterior region is only covered in the case of an amalgam allergy. Should you opt for a composite filling, only the difference between those two will be charged (about 45 EUR).
Dental insurances cover almost all fillings up to 100%.
Generally, the cost of dental fillings depends on the size of the tooth defect, the type of filling, and the material used. Your dentist will explain the differences and give you an estimate.
|Amalgam||Paid by the health insurance (20 – 45 EUR otherweise)|
|Cement||Paid by the health insurance (20 – 45 EUR otherweise)|
|Plastic or composite fillings||60 to 200 EUR|
|Gold or Inlay||400 to 800 EUR|
|Ceramic||400 to 900 EUR|
1. Amalgam filling
Amalgam is the cheapest material for dental fillings in Germany. They are made out of silver, copper, tin, zinc, and mercury and are the standard fillings, especially for larger tooth damage in the posterior and molar regions.
Amalgam fillings are very stable and withstand chewing loads very well. However, the use of the material for dental fillings is controversial. The reason is that toxic, harmful mercury vapors can be produced when the fillings are inserted or removed.
2. Plastic or composite filling
Plastic or composite fillings (also known as white fillings) are a type of filling made of glass, quartz, or ceramics and are tooth-colored. This type of filling is particularly suitable for more minor defects in the front, visible area of the tooth.
3. Cement fillings
Cement fillings are mainly used for temporary fillings. They are free of charge for patients with health insurance.
4. Ceramic filling
A ceramic dental filling is an inlay. Unlike amalgam or composite fillings, inlays are made in the laboratory after a dental impression has been taken. More work involved – more expensive.
Ceramic inlays last longer than amalgam or plastic fillings. In addition, they are almost invisible. Ceramic inlays look similar to natural teeth. This type of filling is expensive and public insurance doesn’t cover the costs.
5. Gold filling
Gold fillings are suitable for small tooth defects. However, they are highly visible. In addition, they aren’t reimbursed by health insurance.
Nonetheless, you have a two-year guarantee on all fillings in Germany. If a filling leaks or falls out during this period, your dentist must replace it at no cost.
Read more about dental care in Germany.
Cost of the crown
The medical treatment of a broken tooth, for example, with a dental crown, is considered a dental prosthesis. Public health insurance companies have a fixed price that they cover, but it’s never 100% due to the high cost of the treatment.
In the end, the patient pays the rest of the cost himself. The final price depends on the crown material.
Price patient pays out of pocket in addition to the health insurance:
|Full-cast||250 to 400 EUR|
|Partial ceramic||400 to 600 EUR|
|Gold||500 to 700 EUR|
|100% Ceramic||700 to 1,000 EUR|
Cost of braces
Both children and adults might need to get braces at some point in their life. In Germany, only children with severe jaw disalignment can receive this treatment for free. All others will need to pay partly or entirely.
Health insurance doesn’t pay a penny for children with a mild jaw disalignment known as KIG 1-2. Children with severe cases (KIG 3-5) receive removable braces made of plastic or metal or fixed braces with stainless steel brackets for free.
For adults, health insurance only pays in the case of a severe jaw misalignment where treatment is necessary.
Yet, more aesthetic, transparent brackets or speed brackets for a shorter wearing time must be paid by the parents.
|Small jaw corrections||500 EUR|
|Fixed braces||1,500 EUR|
|Temporomandibular joint dysfunction||6,000 EUR|
Cost of teeth cleaning
The cost of a professional dental cleaning varies between 80 EUR and 150 EUR in Germany. It’s billed per tooth. Hence, the more teeth you need to clean, the more expensive the procedure.
During professional teeth cleaning, the dentist uses modern technology to remove plaque and improve oral hygiene.
With public health insurance, you can have one cleaning per year for free. Dental insurance gives several procedures in a year for free.
Cost of a tooth implant
For dentures, health insurance pays a fixed allowance depending on the treatment type. The health insurance company covers 60% percent of the total amount. Standard means simple design (unveneered bridge) and inexpensive material.
Expect the following co-payments even after receiving an allowance from the health insurance:
|Dental bridge||500 – 1,200 EUR|
|Implant, one tooth||2,100 – 3,500 EUR|
|Full denture, one jaw||500 – 850 EUR|
People with a low income can receive higher coverage. Their income must be under 1,274 EUR gross. Public health insurance will cover almost 100% of the dentures’ cost.
Cost of root canal treatment
Public insurance covers the costs of root canal treatment only under certain conditions. Mainly, it comes to whether the tooth is worth preserving or not.
The dentist checks whether he can clean and fill the root canals. If it’s not possible or doesn’t make sense, your health insurance will only cover the tooth removal.
|Treatment||Total cost||Paid by the health insurance||Paid by the patient|
|Root canal treatment||200 – 1,500 EUR||300 EUR if the tooth is worthy of preservation||up to 500 EUR and 100% |
if the tooth isn’t worthy
|Periodontal treatment||150 – 1,000 EUR||100 – 600 EUR||150 – 1,000 EUR|
Cost of wisdom tooth extraction
Tooth extraction isn’t a very expensive treatment in Germany. You can even do it without health insurance and don’t go bankrupt.
The removal cost includes consultation, x-ray, operation, and suture removal. It shouldn’t be more than 200 EUR. Your insurance will reimburse all costs if the procedure is necessary. Dental insurance will cover it in any case.
Cost of dental bridge
Getting a dental bridge is an expensive procedure in Germany. A dental bridge is a fixed replacement for lost teeth. Depending on the material, the cost of a dental bridge ranges from 300 EUR to 13,000 EUR.
For example, a simple steel-based dental bridge is about 500 EUR, while an aesthetically perfect all-ceramic bridge can cost over 2,000 EUR.
Bridges such as dental prostheses are mostly covered by the patient and not by health insurance. Your regular insurance will only cover a fixed allowance.
The total cost of a bridge depends on the number of teeth to be replaced, the material used, the veneer, the anchoring of the dental bridge, and the location where you want to have the treatment.
The fixed allowance of public health insurance ranges between 471 EUR and 1,127 EUR per bridge. Below are the price ranges of self-contribution:
|Simple bridge||550 – 780 EUR|
|Steel bridge||950 – 1,450 EUR|
|Ceramic||1,200 – 1,900 EUR|
|Gold – ceramic||1,700 – 2,400 EUR|