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Dental Cover

When you take out international health insurance through William Russell, you have the option to select cover for a wide range of dental treatments for you and your family members.

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Susan Kelly

International Claims Team Manager Download Contact
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Susan Kelly

International Claims Team Manager

What is dental insurance cover for expats?

Dental insurance for expats covers non-national residents for a range of dentistry treatments administered at a private dental practice. Some of the treatments that may be covered include:


Where a lost tooth is filled in with a porcelain or metal replacement.


A crown is a cap, made from porcelain or metal, that is placed on top of a damaged tooth.


Fillings are used to repair holes in teeth left behind by decay.

Root canal

A root canal removes infected tissue from the centre of a tooth and replaces it, sometimes finishing with a crown.

Scale and polish

This is when your teeth are professionally cleaned by a hygienist.


False teeth, custom-made to fit the size and shape of your mouth.

Why do I need dental insurance as an expat?

Oral health is one of the world’s biggest health concerns. Despite the fact that many dental conditions can be easily prevented, most low-income and middle-income countries worldwide are unable to provide a high standard of dental healthcare. That’s where dental insurance can help.

This is something expatriates must be conscious of if they are planning to move, or are already living, abroad.

It’s practically guaranteed every expat will need to visit the dentist at some point – and when that time comes, you’ll want to make sure you’re getting the best possible treatment to maintain your oral well-being.

Explore other benefits of our plans
Emergency medical evacuation
William Russell have been an absolute pleasure to deal with and will be on the top of my referral list whenever I hear the word ‘expatriate’.
C.J., Canada
William Russell Member

What dental treatment does William Russell cover?

When you take out international health insurance through William Russell, you have the option to select cover for a wide range of dental treatments for you and your family members.

We offer two types of upgradable dental insurance plans: Dental Basic and Dental Plus.

What do all our insurance plans cover for dental treatment?

Even if you don’t upgrade to Dental Basic or Dental Plus, you will still have dental coverage for you and your dependents:

Emergency restorative treatment as an in-patient

This means you are covered for emergency treatment to repair natural teeth lost or damaged in an accident, within 15 days of the accident, as an in-patient.

Levels of cover for in-patient restorative treatment are:





Full Cover
Up to US$5,000/£3,300/€3,750 per period of cover
Full cover
Full cover

Emergency restorative treatment as an out-patient

This covers treatment for natural teeth lost or damaged in an accident, received within 72 hours of the accident, as an out-patient. Levels of dental coverage for out-patient restorative treatment are:





Not covered
Not covered
Up to US$500/£330/€375 per period of cover
Up to US$1,000/£660/€750 per period of cover
What Sharon, our medical expert, says
“All the plans come with some cover for dental treatment. With the SilverLite, Silver and Gold plans, you can add more benefits.”

What does Dental Basic cover?

Dental Basic is included as standard on all Gold plans and is an optional extra for SilverLite and Silver plans. Dental Basic requires a six-month waiting period.

With Dental Basic, in addition to the above, you’ll have dental coverage for the following dental costs

  1. Screening (including checking for and assessment of diseased, missing and filled teeth, including X-rays where necessary)
  2. Routine cleanings (scaling and polishing and sealing) twice per year
  3. Fillings (composite and amalgam)
  4. Simple extractions
  5. Root canal treatment

The policy limits are:


Bronze SilverLite Silver Gold
Up to US$500/£330/€375 per period of cover, subject to 20% co-insurance Up to US$1,000/£660/€750 per period of cover, subject to 20% co-insurance Up to US$1,500/£1,000/€1,125



What does Dental Plus cover?

Dental Plus is optional for Silver and Gold plan policyholders. Silver plan holders wishing to choose Dental Plus must also select Dental Basic.

Dental Plus provides additional dental benefits and services covering:

  1. Denture repair
  2. Full/partial dentures
  3. Dental bridges
  4. Crowns, inlays, and onlays
  5. Dental implants

The policy limits are:

Bronze SilverLite Silver Gold
Up to US$1,500/£1,000/€1,125 per period of cover, subject to 20% co-insurance Up to US$2,000/£1,330/€1,500 per period of cover, subject to 20% co-insurance

Please note that Dental Plus requires a 10 month waiting period.


Our international health insurance plan also covers restorative dental treatment
following chemotherapy or radiotherapy – find out more about our cancer coverage

Why choose
William Russell?

At William Russell, we have over 30 years’ experience of helping expatriates settle into their new lives overseas by providing world-class international health insurance.

Any time you need us

You can call our 24/7 emergency medical helpline

Choose your hospital

You’re free to choose which hospital you visit for treatment

Worldwide network

We have a worldwide network of hospitals and doctors to call upon

Ready to see prices? Get an online quote in under 2 minutes
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How to choose the right international health insurance cover

Here are some of our top tips:

  1. Make sure the plan covers the country where you live. Insurance companies sometimes limit your cover in certain countries. Make sure you’ll have full insurance coverage where you and your family live and work.
  2. Pick the right plan. Health insurance gives you access to private healthcare. Your health plan sets the rules and limits of your access. That’s why it’s important to find a health plan with the benefits you need.
  3. Personalise your plan. Most insurance companies allow you to personalise your health plan. You’ll have options to increase your cover for certain benefits, e.g., dental cover, doctor visits. William Russell also gives you options to save money on your premium.
  4. Pick an excess. After choosing your plan, the excess you select is the most important factor affecting your premium. Most of our members choose a US$250 per annum excess, but larger excesses give a bigger discount on your premium. We offer excesses up to US$10,000 per annum.

FAQs on dental insurance

The statistics surrounding dentistry and oral health highlight that this is an area of growing concern. The UK’s Oral Health Foundation reported in 2020 that:

  • Around 1 in 3 British adults (31%) have tooth decay
  • There are over 8,000 new cases of mouth cancer each year in the UK
  • Over three million Brits suffer from regular oral pain

Worldwide, the scale of the problem is even greater. The World Health Organization (WHO) reports that oral diseases affect roughly half the global population, with oral cancers the third most common type of cancer in the Asia-Pacific region. Furthermore, the WHO reports:

  • Tooth decay is the most common health condition worldwide
  • 1 in 10 people will experience periodontal gum disease, which often results in tooth loss
  • The danger is greater for the one in seven adults worldwide who regularly smoke cigarettes, as well as for those who drink fizzy drinks and alcohol

The scale of the global oral health crisis cannot be under-stated.

More frequently asked questions on international health insurance

Unfortunately, we can’t provide coverage for orthodontic and periodontic consultations and treatment.

In some countries, many types of dental treatments are only available privately

Even in countries with subsidised or public dental healthcare, you may still have to pay a share of the cost for certain procedures.

As of 2019, the ten most expensive countries for dental care worldwide, based on the average price of dental implant, are:

Country Cost in US$
Singapore $2,700
USA $2,500
Thailand $1,720
Malaysia $1,500
South Korea $1,350
Israel $1,200
Colombia $1,200
Turkey $1,100
Poland $925
India $900

Source: Statista

Global health insurance (also known as international private medical insurance) gives you access to private healthcare around the world.

While most domestic health plans only cover you in one country, international health plans cover you in multiple (or even all) countries. They’re great for people who live and work abroad, or who spend lots of time travelling. Some international medical plans also include emergency medical evacuation cover so you can access urgent treatment even if it’s not available in your location.

Find out more

Some countries provide dental care under their universal healthcare policies, which includes students. Other countries may ask you to pay for dental treatments but offer free or discounted dental care for students.

If you’re a university student, you may also be eligible to receive free or discounted dental treatment through your institution.

However, generally speaking, it’s advisable for students to take out dental healthcare cover when living abroad. Having an international dental plan will help in certain situations, for instance where emergency dental treatment is needed.

Dental care is subsidised but not free in the United Kingdom. If you have an NHS number, you will be eligible to sign up at an NHS dentist. This is assuming you can find one – many British dentists have long waiting lists for new patients.

An NHS dentist will ask you to pay certain fees, but you may not need to pay the full amount for certain treatments.

If you’re an international student in the UK and you’re enrolled in full-time study for a minimum of six months, you can access subsidised dental care under the NHS (a yearly immigration health surcharge applies). Keep in mind that NHS dentists have long wait times for new patients. 

If you’re not a full-time student in the UK studying for at least six months, then you’re not eligible to use the NHS or its dental services. Instead, depending on the length of your stay, you can take out private international health insurance with dental coverage or travel insurance with dental cover.

It depends on your insurer and health plan. Here at William Russell, all our plans come with emergency dental coverage. You have the option to add routine dental care (e.g., cleanings, fillings) to our SilverLite and Silver plans. For complex dental care, you can add complex dental coverage (e.g., crowns, inlays, bridges) to our Silver plan. Gold plans come with routine dental care, with the possibility to add on complex dental care.

William Russell has over 30 years of experience in medical and dental insurance for international students. As a family business, we provide personalised service to parents and their children studying abroad. We put your safety and service first with 24/7 support. For example, you’ll always speak to a friendly claims manager, never an automated call centre. 

All international health plans from William Russell come with emergency overseas dental insurance cover. In addition, students will have cover for emergency medical evacuation, mental health benefits, and routine medical care. Parents can even add more complex dental care coverage (depending on the plan). 

Find out more about international student insurance

If you’re on vacation, you may be eligible for emergency dental care cover through your travel insurance. However, your local health insurance or company insurance may not work overseas to cover a dental emergency. 

If you travel extensively or plan to, you may want to consider getting dental insurance overseas through an international health insurance provider. All overseas insurance plans from William Russell include emergency dental cover for expats.

Private dental care in the UK is notoriously expensive. Depending on the treatment required, you may be expected to pay hundreds or even thousands of pounds for a treatment.

It is therefore highly recommended you take out international healthcare cover with dental insurance if you are planning to move to or study in the UK.

In most cases, we can provide health insurance with dental coverage only to expats. By expat, we mean people living and working outside of their country of nationality (e.g., a Dutch national living in Taiwan or a Canadian national living in India).

Typically, our members reside permanently in a foreign country. But we can sometimes provide health insurance with dental cover to people expecting to spend at least 6 months of the year living or travelling abroad. In certain countries, we can cover people living in the same country that issues their passport. These countries include Botswana, Kenya, Nigeria, Mauritius, Estonia and Malawi (see the full list here).

We can provide dental service cover to people of all nationalities in most countries around the world. You must be under age 76 when your plan starts, and you must be living or working in a country different from your country of nationality.

Definition of an ‘expat’

Making a dental claim or other type of health claim with William Russell is really easy.

If you need to claim for a dental benefit or treatment, you just pay for the treatment up front, then send us the bill for reimbursement. Instead, for in-patient emergency dental treatment, there’s a different procedure. In medical emergencies, we would already be in touch with the hospital and settle your bill directly with the medical centre.

Follow these simple steps