Health insurance for orthodontics

Avoid paying full price for braces: get orthodontics insurance from $32 a month.

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Orthodontics insurance is covered by extras policies. Even if you only get a mid-range policy, it could cut the cost of your braces by up to $300 a year, while giving you heaps of other benefits too.

Health insurance with orthodontics policies always have a year-long waiting period before you can claim any money back, so it's better to get started sooner, rather than later.

Compare health insurance with orthodontics cover

The table below shows some extras policies from Finder partners, all of which cover orthodontics with a 12 month waiting period.

Name Product Teeth Alignment Braces Annual Limit Price Per Month Hide CompareBox Apply
Frank Some Extras 50%
$300
$32.65
HBF Complete 60
$600
$44.67
Medibank Growing Family Extras Only 60
$100
$50.10
ahm lifestyle Extras
$600
$53.90
Qantas Family Extras
$600
$54.62
HCF Vital Extras
$700
$58.90
Peoplecare High Extras
$800
$91.30
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*Quotes are based on single individual with less than $90,000 income and living in Sydney.

Compare more health insurance policies with orthodontics cover

Want to see more options than those featured above? Just fill in your details in below and we'll let you compare more than 20 different options, all with orthodontics cover.

Tip: Select 'comprehensive dental cover' when asked what's most important to you.

What is orthodontics insurance?

Orthodontics insurance helps towards the cost of orthodontics treatments, such as braces, aligners and retainers. It isn't usually referred to as orthodontics insurance though.

Instead, cover for orthodontics is found inside some extras health insurance policies. This is the type of health insurance you should be looking for if you want cover for orthodontics.

Just be aware, not every extras policy will cover orthodontics. Always pay close attention to the benefits and features included, and use the Finder table to compare policies side by side.

Does health insurance cover braces?

Some health insurance policies include cover for braces, but not all of them. If you're looking for help with braces, you need to look for an extras health insurance policy which includes orthodontics cover.

If you have orthodontics cover, you'll be able to claim back some of the costs related to braces. However, it's unlikely the full cost of your braces will be covered. That's because health funds will either pay a percentage of your bill up to a certain amount or they will pay a set amount which is usually less than the cost of treatment.

For example, your fund might pay 80% of your bill up to a maximum of $800, or they might offer an $800 benefit, regardless of whether your bill cost $800 or $8,000.

However, because braces are usually pretty expensive, it's unlikely the benefit from your health insurance will cover the full amount.

Remember, once you buy health insurance for orthodontics, you still have to wait a year before you can claim any money back for braces or other orthodontic treatments.

How does orthodontics insurance work?

Orthodontics is covered by extras health insurance. You pay a regular fee, known as a premium, and in exchange you can claim some money back whenever you spend cash on certain healthcare treatments.

You won't get 100% of the cost of your orthodontics treatments back. That's because health insurance only covers a percentage of the cost, or a set amount. The amount varies between different funds, different policies, and different treatments but you can find out what it is in your product disclosure statement (PDS).

There are also waiting limits, annual limits, and lifetime limits to be aware of when taking out health insurance for orthodontics. Every extras policy applies a 12 month waiting period on orthodontics claims. That's because insurance companies need to be sure you're not just buying a policy to make a big claim and then cancel.

Annual limits determine the maximum amount you can claim back for orthodontics treatments in any year. Usually, this is several hundred dollars and may even increase the longer you hold your policy, although not always.

Lifetime limits are also important to pay attention to. They tell you the most you'll ever be able to claim for orthodontics treatments, no matter how long you hold your policy for. Almost all funds have a lifetime limit on orthodontics and they apply across funds too. That means you won't be able to switch funds and access more orthodontics treatment, unless you buy a more comprehensive policy with a bigger limit.

How to find the best health insurance for orthodontics

The best health insurance for orthodontics may be different depending on how much treatment you need done, what your budget is, and any other benefits you're likely to claim.

Follow these steps and they should help you find the best policy for you:

  • Compare online. Don't just go with a brand you recognise, or the one your best friend recommends. Compare online to find out which policy is right for you - you could save hundreds of dollars just by researching for a few minutes.
  • Look at annual limits. This is the most you'll ever be able to claim in a year for orthodontics. The higher the limit, the more you can claim. However, you'll also pay a higher premium.
  • Check lifetime limits. Insurers also apply lifetime limits to orthodontics. If you know you're going to have a lot of work done, be sure to check the lifetime limit as it's the most you'll ever be able to claim - no matter how long you hold a policy.
  • Percentage back. Just because you have an annual limit of $500, doesn't mean you'll be able to claim $500 back. That's because you can only claim back a percentage of your bill. Keep an eye out for higher percentages as it means you have to pay less on every bill.
  • Price. We all know price is important. Don't just go for the cheapest policy without comparing your options, as you might be able to find a better deal elsewhere. On the flipside, don't push yourself beyond your budget.
  • Other benefits. Extras policies come with heaps of benefits on top of orthodontics. You can get money off massages, physio appointments and even gym memberships. Take a look at what else is on offer to really make the policy work for you.

How much do braces cost?

That's a tricky one. According to Orthodontics Australia, braces can cost anywhere from $6,000 to $15,000 for a 15-18 month treatment. That includes the cost of regular consultations.

However, health insurance with orthodontics cover can make a big dent in that bill. As that treatment is spread over an extended period, you'll be able to claim your annual limit up 3 times.

That's because, for most health funds, benefit limits renew in January. So if you made a payment in late 2020 you would also be able to make a payment in early next year. You could then make another payment early in the year after.

That means, if you had an annual limit of $800, there's potential to claim as much as $2,200 off the cost of your braces. But that's not all.

If you have health insurance with orthodontics cover, your policy will also cover routine dental treatment and will have separate limits. So some of the treatment you have, including X-rays and exams, will be covered by routine dental rather than orthodontics.

Depending on how many check-ups you need over the course of your treatment, you could end up claiming another couple of hundred dollars back. Hooray!

Which types of orthodontic treatment are covered?

Orthodontics is usually defined as specialist dentistry treatment which aligns teeth and jaws. Treatments include braces, plates and retainers.

You may need orthodontic treatment for crooked teeth, a bad bite, gaps between your teeth, teeth that stick out, or even if you have issues speaking, breathing or chewing.

In addition to more traditional braces, Invisalign should also be covered by health insurance with orthodontic benefits. Just be aware, Invisalign can be more expensive than traditional methods for similar treatments, so you could be left with greater out-of-pocket expenses.

What limits are applied to orthodontics?

There are two types of limits that may be applied to the orthodontics cover under your extras insurance - annual limits and lifetime limits.

Annual limits

With extras insurance, each specific benefit has an annual limit. That means you won't be able to claim more than a certain amount every year. If your annual limit for orthodontics is $800, that's the most you'll be able to claim until your benefit limit resets. Limits usually reset in January, but some funds reset in June.

Sometimes, your annual benefit may increase every year, for a certain number of years. For example, you may have $500 annual benefit which increases to $700 the following year and $900 the year after that. This isn't always the case, but it's something to keep an eye out for.

Lifetime limits

Most funds apply lifetime limits to orthodontics. That means, no matter how long you hold your policy for, you'll never be able to claim over a certain amount on orthodontics treatments.

Importantly, this lifetime limit applies across funds. That means you won't be able to switch funds and access more orthodontic benefits. The only way to access more money back would be to take out a more comprehensive policy and increase your limit amount.

Why are waiting periods applied to orthodontics?

Waiting periods are applied to orthodontics because orthodontics treatments can be a major expense. If there was no waiting period, there is a risk people would sign up to a health fund just to make a claim worth several hundred dollars and then leave after a week.

If that happened, health funds would quickly start losing money and would have to put the price of their policies up for everybody else, making them unaffordable.

Other health funds that cover orthodontics

Health funds will have several types of extras policy which include different levels of orthodontic cover. We've featured some examples in the table below.

Health fundWhich policies include cover for orthodontics and what are the benefit limits*?Find out more
AHM health insurance logo

AHM

  • Super Extras. Annual limit of $900 with a lifetime limit of $2,900.
  • Family Extras. Annual limit of $700 with a lifetime limit of $2,200.
  • Lifestyle Extras. Annual limit of $600 with a lifetime limit of $1,800.
More info
Australian Unity Health Insurance Logo

Australian Unity

  • Advanced 80% Extras. Annual limit of $800 with a lifetime limit of $2400
  • Classic Extras. Annual limit $600 with a lifetime maximum of $2400
  • Comprehensive Extras. Up to 100% back with a lifetime maximum of $2400
More info

Bupa Health Insurance logo

Bupa

  • Top Extras 90. Annual limit of $900 with a lifetime limit of $2800.
  • Top Extras 75. Annual limit of $800 with a lifetime limit of $2600.
  • Top Extras 60. Annual limit of $700 with a lifetime limit of $2000.
  • Your Choice Extras 60. Annual limit starts at $450 for first two years and increases each year after, capping at $900. Lifetime limit of $1300.
More info
cua health insurance logo

CUA

  • Total Extras. Annual limit of $900 with a lifetime limit of $2700.
  • 75% Extras. Annual limit of $800 with a lifetime limit of $2000.
  • Classic Extras. Annual limit of $500 with a lifetime limit of $1500.
More info
GMHBA health fund logo

GMHBA

  • Top Extras 75% & Top Extras Set Benefits. Annual limit starts at $700 and caps at $1,000. Lifetime limit is $3,200.
  • Mid Extras 65% & MID EXTRAS Set Benefits. Annual limit starts at $400 and caps at $700. Lifetime limit is $2400.
More info
Frank health logo

Frank Health Insurance

  • More Extras. Annual limit of 600 with a lifetime limit of $1800.
  • Lots extras (80% & 50% back) Annual limit starts at $700 and caps at $900 after 5 years. A lifetime limit of $2,900 applies for orthodontic services if more than one course of treatment is needed.
More info
HBF Health Insurance

HBF

  • Top 70. Annual limit of $800 with a lifetime limit of $2400.
  • Complete 60. Annual limit of $600 with a lifetime limit of $1800.
More info
HCF health insurance

HCF

  • HCF TOP EXTRAS. HCF Top Extras. Annual limit of $800 with a lifetime limit of $2400.
  • HCF VITAL EXTRAS. Annual limit of $700 with a lifetime limit of $2100.
More info
health care insurance logo

Healthcare

  • Premier Extras. Annual limit of $900 with a lifetime limit of $2,700.
  • Healthy Extras. Annual limit of $600 with a lifetime limit of $1800.
More info
health partners insurance logo

Health Partners

  • Better Extras. Annual limit starts at $800 and caps at $1500 after 4 years. Maximum yearly amount, less previous amounts claimed. Lifetime limit is $1500.
  • Best Extras. Annual limit starts at $900 and caps at $2800 after 4 years. Maximum yearly amount, less previous amounts claimed. Lifetime limit is $2800.
More info
HIF Health Insurance logo

HIF

The orthodontic benefit limit in HIF policies is a lifetime limit that forms part of the overall annual limit. The limit also increases annually and caps after 5 years.
  • Premium Options. Annual limit starts at $1,500 and caps at $3,000.
  • Super Options. Annual limit starts at $1,300 and caps at $2,500.
  • Special Options. Annual limit starts at $1,000 and caps at $2,000.
More info
Hunter Health Logo

Hunter

  • Elite Extras. Annual limit of $600 with a lifetime limit of $2500
  • Optimum Extras. Annual limit of $400 with a lifetime limit of $1800.
  • Classic / Healthy Extras. Annual limit of $200 with $2400 lifetime limit.
More info
latrobe health insurance logo

Latrobe

  • Premier Extras. Annual limit of $900 after 2 years which increases each rolling year until it caps at $3,000 after 10 years.
  • Premier Singles and Couples. Annual limit of $750 with a lifetime limit of $2,400.
  • Premier Families Care Extras. Annual limit of $750 with a lifetime limit of $2400.
  • Core Complete Extras. Annual limit of $900 after 2 years which increases each following year until it caps at $1800 after 10 years.
More info
medibank health insurance logo

Medibank

  • Top Extras. Annual limit of $400 with a lifetime limit up to $1,200.
  • Growing Family Extras. Annual limit of $100 with a lifetime limit up to $1,200.
More info
mildura health fund logo

Mildura Health Fund

  • Five Star Extras. Annual limit of $800 with a lifetime limit of $2400.
More info
onemedifund health insurance logo

onemedifund

  • Comprehensive Extras. Lifetime limit of $2100.
More info
nib health insurance logo

nib

  • Top Extras. The annual limit starts at $800 and increases by $100 per person per calendar year. Lifetime limit of $2600.
More info
Peoplecare health insurance logo

Peoplecare

  • Premium Extras. Annual limit of $1,000 with a lifetime limit of $3,000.
  • High Extras. Annual limit of $800 with a lifetime limit of $2,400.
More info
Queensland country health fund logo

Queensland Country Health Fund

  • Premium Extras. Annual limit of $1,000 which increases each year until it caps at $3,000 after three years of holding cover. Lifetime limit is $3,000.
  • Essential Extras. Annual limit of $500 which increases each year until it caps at $1,500 after three years of holding cover. Lifetime limit is $1,500.
More info
St. Lukes Health insurance Logo

stlukeshealth

  • Super Extras. Annual sub-limit of $1,000 which is deducted from an overall dental benefit limit of $1,500. Overall lifetime limit is $2,800.
More info
Transport Health Logo logo

Transport Health

  • Top Extras. Annual limit of $500 which increases to a maximum of $1,000 after five years. Lifetime limit is $2,500.
More info
westfund health insurance logo

Westfund health insurance

  • Ultimate Extras. Limit builds up to $650 per member per policy year, to use on orthodontics with a maximum accrued lifetime benefit of $3250.
  • Advantage Pro Extras. Limit builds up to $500 per member per policy year, to use on orthodontics with a maximum accrued lifetime benefit of $2500.
More info

CBHS Health Fund Logo

CBHS Health Fund

Restricted fund**

  • Top Extras. Lifetime limit of $2,800.
  • Intermediate Extras. Annual limit of $700 with a lifetime limit of $1400.
More info
defence health logo

Defence Health

Restricted fund**

  • Premier Extras. Annual limit of $1,000 with no lifetime limit.
  • Value Extras. Annual limit of $800 with no lifetime limit.
More info
navy health insurance logo

Navy Health

Restricted fund**

  • Premium Extras. Annual limit of $2,500.
  • Healthy Living Extras. Annual limit of $2,000.
More info
doctors health fund logo

Doctors Health Fund

Restricted fund**

  • Total Extras. Annual limit of $600 with a lifetime limit of $3,000.
  • Essential Extras. Annual sub-limit of $320 which is deducted from an overall dental benefit limit of $1,600. Lifetime limit is $1,600.
More info
police health insurance logo

Police Health

Restricted fund**

  • Rolling Extras. Annual limit of $1500 with lifetime limit of $3,000.
More info
rt health insurance logo

rt health

Restricted fund**

  • Premium Extras Cover. Annual limit of $1,000 with a lifetime limit of $3,000.
More info
rbhs health insurance logo

rbhs

Restricted fund**

  • Premium Extras. Annual limit of $890 which increases every year until it caps at the lifetime limit of $4,450 after 5 years.
More info
tuh health insurance logo

TUH

Restricted fund**

  • Comprehensive Extras. Annual limit of $1,000 with a lifetime limit of $2,800.
  • Healthy Options Extras. Annual limit of $700 with a lifetime limit of $2,100.
  • Mid Range Extras. Annual limit of $550 with a lifetime limit of $1,650.
  • Family Extras. Annual limit of $850 with a lifetime limit of $2550.
  • Everyday Extras. Annual limit of $700 with a lifetime limit of $2100.00
More info

*Unless otherwise stated, all benefit limits are per person.
**Restricted funds only provide cover to members of specific industries, groups and organisations. In some cases family members may also be eligible to join.

Picture: GettyImages

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2 Responses

    Default Gravatar
    TheaJanuary 1, 2018

    Health insurance policy with maximum orthodontic cover

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      MayJanuary 2, 2018Staff

      Hi Thea,

      Thanks for reaching out.

      As we can’t recommend a specific insurance company to our users, you’d be best to compare your options by filling out the form above with your details then click on ‘Search Policies’. The maximum Orthodontic treatment and insurance benefits offered by private health insurers differ from one another depending on the level of cover you get. Typically, if you stay longer with your insurer, they will also maximise the benefits for you.

      Cheers,
      May

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