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An Expat’s Guide to Dental Care and Insurance in Thailand

Whether you’re seeking routine oral maintenance, specialized treatments, or cosmetic procedures, having an in-depth understanding of dental care and insurance in Thailand is a must as an expat in the country. As a fundamental aspect of overall well-being, dental health is crucial for everyone.

For those living in or visiting Thailand, comprehending the dynamics of dental care and the availability of dental insurance options is imperative and can empower them to make better decisions. From finding the right dentist to navigating costs, this Pacific Prime Thailand guide dives deep into dental care.

The Importance of Dental Care

Aside from giving you a beautiful smile, maintaining optimal oral health is integral to holistic health. Dental problems can have significant consequences, such as heart disease, respiratory conditions, and rheumatoid arthritis. Fortunately, regular dental visits can help with early detection.

Dental examinations and cleanings can also mitigate potential health risks associated with poor oral health. What’s more, timely consultation with a dentist is a must when you experience any discomfort or notice any changes in your teeth and oral cavity. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.

Choosing the Right Dentist in Thailand as an Expat

The combination of exceptional care and affordable cost makes Thailand a popular destination for dental tourism, but choosing the right dentist can still be a challenge. Many of the country’s world-class dental facilities are located in the capital city of Bangkok and other major Thai destinations.

When you begin your search for a dentist in Thailand, you can opt for general dentists or specialists – depending on the type of dental procedure required. While a general dentist can provide dental exams, cleanings, removals, fillings, and more, specialists can handle more complex procedures.

Dental Clinic Options in Thailand

Thailand’s dental landscape encompasses dental hospitals, dental schools, privately owned clinics, and brand-name dental clinics. Let’s take a closer look at local dental clinic options.

  • Dental hospitals: Both government and private hospitals offer dental services, varying in quality and pricing.
  • Dental schools: These institutions provide cost-effective dental care options, albeit with longer waiting times and lower service levels than others.
  • Privately owned clinics: Conveniently situated along the streets or inside shopping malls, these clinics cater to routine procedures, though some places also handle those that are more complex.
  • Brand-name dental clinics: Focusing on expats, these clinics provide superior facilities and state-of-the-art equipment.

How Much Do Dental Procedures in Thailand Cost?

Close up of teeth examination with mirror and pick - dental care

The cost of dental treatments in Thailand is significantly lower than in many other countries around the world. Below are estimates of prices for various dental procedures across leading clinics.

Clinic Crowns Root Canals Dental Implants Braces
BIDC THB ฿10,000-20,000 THB ฿ 10,000-27,000 THB ฿ 35,000-70,000 THB ฿ 60,000-195,000
Truth Dental Clinic THB ฿ 8,200-22,200 THB ฿ 9,200-19,200 THB ฿ 45,000-85,000 THB ฿ 45,000-215,000
PMDC Dental THB ฿ 17,000-18,000 THB ฿ 9,000-13,000 THB ฿ 80,000 THB ฿ 85,000-180,000

Since treatment recommendations and pricing can vary, seeking multiple professional opinions and understanding the necessity of a certain procedure is crucial. Note that dental procedures in Thailand usually require upfront payment, and basic insurance plans might not offer comprehensive coverage.

A Closer Look at Cavity Fillings

Cavity fillings play an instrumental role in treating tooth decay. A wide variety of filling materials are available, each of which has its own unique advantages. From amalgam to ceramic, let’s dive deeper into cavity fillings as many expats need them at some point during their time in Thailand.

  • Amalgam fillings: Comprising multiple materials, these fillings are sturdy and more affordable, yet they are also more noticeable when you smile or laugh.
  • Composite fillings: Mimicking natural tooth color, composite fillings seamlessly blend in and are suitable for moderate restorations.
  • Metal fillings: These fillings come in silver and gold options, and offer durability and affordability.
  • Glass ionomer fillings: Releasing fluoride for protection, these fillings are less durable than other alternatives but provide specific benefits.
  • Ceramic fillings:  With their natural appearance and stain-resistant features, ceramic fillings are a premium alternative that can cost as much as gold cavity fillings.

In order to maintain optimal oral health, it’s vital to know when to replace existing cavity fillings. Regular dental examinations can help identify any issues with current fillings in a timely manner.

The Cost of Cavity Fillings in Thailand

In Thailand, the cost of cavity fillings varies depending on the chosen filling material. Composite fillings generally start at around THB ฿1,000, while more intricate options (e.g., gold inlays) can cost up to THB ฿16,000.

Comparing prices and choosing a reputable dental establishment is necessary for securing quality dental care without exorbitant expenses. Here are some hospitals and clinics to start your research:

Covering Costs with Dental Insurance in Thailand

Modern dental clinic with dentist working on patient for dental care

If you’re an expat in Thailand seeking dental treatment in the country’s private hospitals, or you live abroad and are considering visiting as a medical tourist to enhance your pearly whites, it’s advisable to have your own international private dental insurance policy before your appointment.

Having your own dental insurance plan in place ensures you will get access to quality dental care without having to worry about paying for it out of pocket.

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Dental Coverage Options in Thailand

When searching for dental coverage in Thailand, keep in mind the type(s) of coverage you’d like to include in your plan. There are typically two kinds of dental coverage options to choose from, including routine dental treatment and major dental treatment.

Routine dental treatment plans invariably include fillings, whereas major treatment plans include extensive procedures like orthodontics and wisdom tooth extraction.

Routine Dental Treatment

  • Routine teeth cleaning
  • Dental check-ups
  • Consultations
  • Simple fillings
  • Tooth extraction
  • Root canals
  • X-rays
  • Emergency operations

Major Dental Treatment

  • Wisdom teeth removal
  • Orthodontic treatment (e.g., braces)
  • Bridgework and repairs
  • Gingivitis and periodontitis treatment
  • Denture repair and replacement
  • Membrane treatment and root scaling

Key Considerations When Securing Dental Insurance Coverage

Dental insurance in Thailand is generally bundled with health insurance as an add-on benefit. There are several factors and considerations worth taking into account when buying a dental insurance policy, such as waiting periods, orthodontics, cosmetic dental treatment, and payment methods.

Waiting Periods

Health insurance providers typically impose a waiting period on their dental insurance benefits lasting from 6 to 12 months, which means you’ll have to wait until the time has elapsed before you can make any claims.

Insurers do this to avoid underlying pre-existing dental conditions, as well as to prevent abuse and fraud of the policy.


Even a major dental treatment plan may not cover everything in full. Orthodontic treatments typically come with a co-payment, requiring you to pay a portion of the bill before you can submit claims, due to their high cost.

If you’re looking for dental insurance to cover this costly procedure, your best bet is to consult your insurance broker to see what your options are.

Cosmetic Dental Treatment

Close up of mouth with hands holding invisalign clear braces to teeth for cosmetic dental care

Note that cosmetic dental treatments like Invisalign, a clear alternative to traditional braces, are typically excluded from most dental plans. With that said, every dental plan is unique, so you’ll have to check the terms and conditions, particularly exclusions, when comparing your options.

Payment Methods

“Pay and claim later” payment methods are common with insurance plans, and require you to pay upfront before submitting claims. However, some insurance providers may have their own provider network of dentists, which allows for direct billing.

If direct billing is important to you, be sure to mention this to your insurance broker when making insurance plan comparisons. Most expats prefer the convenience of having their dental bills paid quickly over the paperwork, arrangements, and overall hassle that come with out-of-pocket payments.

Reputable insurance brokers such as Pacific Prime Thailand can help guide expats and their families toward optimal dental insurance plans that are aligned with their unique needs and budgets.


Prioritizing dental health has a positive impact on overall health and well-being, and a comprehensive understanding of dental care and insurance options in Thailand is fundamental for residents and visitors. In fact, dental coverage is highly advisable, regardless of where you are in the world.

Whether you’re looking to learn more about your dental coverage options, secure an expat health insurance plan, or anything in between, Pacific Prime Thailand is your one-stop source for all things health insurance.

With over 20 years of industry experience, we have the knowledge and expertise to help you find the most suitable plan for your unique requirements. Contact us for impartial advice and a free plan comparison today!

Frequently Asked Questions

Is traveling to Thailand for dental work worth it?

Choosing Thailand as your destination for dental treatments is an excellent idea thanks to its lower cost and high-quality treatment.

Is dental treatment more affordable in Thailand?

Dental treatment rates in Thailand are typically cheaper than what you pay in many other countries – with cutting-edge equipment and modern facilities included.

How much does teeth cleaning cost in Thailand?

While dental cleaning costs vary depending on the type of dental clinic you choose, you can expect to pay anywhere from 500 to 2,000 baht per case.

What’s the best country for dental work?

Thailand, Mexico, Costa Rica, India, and Turkey are some of the top countries to travel to for dental care. Thailand is also a popular medical tourism hub, in general.

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Senior Copywriter at Pacific Prime Thailand
Jantra Jacobs is a Senior Copywriter at Pacific Prime with over 10 years of writing and editing experience. She writes and edits a diverse variety of online and offline copy, including sales and marketing materials ranging from articles and advertising copy to reports, guides, RFPs, and more.

Jantra curates and reports on the results of Pacific Prime’s monthly newsletters, as well as manages Pacific Prime’s Deputy Global CEO’s LinkedIn posts. Complemented by her background in business writing, Jantra’s passion for health, insurance, and employee benefits helps her create engaging content - no matter how complex the subject is.

Growing up as a third-culture kid has given her a multicultural perspective that helps her relate to expats and their families while 8 years of working remotely have given her unique insight into hybrid work arrangements and enthusiasm for employee benefits.
Jantra Jacobs