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Our goal is to improve oral health for adolescents, so they can enter adulthood with a confident, healthy smile.

There are a number of adolescent dental care providers, contracted by Health New Zealand - Te Whatu Ora, that provide free* dental care to teenagers from Year 9 until their 18th birthday in your community.

*Free dental care does not include accident-related dental issues (covered under ACC), specialist dental care services e.g. orthodontic treatment, or teeth whitening. 

Once enrolled with a provider, teenagers are entitled to at least one dental exam every 12 months and, if required, additional consultations and basic treatments, free of charge. When a teenager is 17 years old they can have their final free dental exam 9 months after their last exam.

If your teenager has not had a dental exam in the last 12 months, or requires urgent dental care, and they are: 

  • already enrolled with a free adolescent dental care provider, please contact their provider directly for an appointment. Here is a list of providers and their contact numbers.
  • not enrolled with a free adolescent dental care provider, please choose a provider in the Wellington Region from this list. Call your chosen provider to enrol for free adolescent dental services and book an appointment. Then complete the enrolment form at the first appointment.
  • If you no longer live in the Greater Wellington Regionclick here to find a provider in your region.  

If you want to change your teenager's adolescent dental care provider:

  1. Tell the current dental provider your teenager is switching to another provider and find out when your teenager's last dental exam with them was.
  2. Contact the new dental provider to enrol your teenager. Let them know when your teenager's last dental exam was. The new provider can book your teenager in for their free yearly dental exam 12 months after their last exam (or after 9 months if they are 17 years old).
Free standard dental care includes:
  • routine examination to check teeth for decay and look at the gums and mouth for any problems
  • x-rays used to find tooth decay and other problems that cannot be seen
  • fluoride treatment, which helps make the surface of the teeth more resistant to decay
  • fissure sealants, which are a thin layer of white filling, painted onto teeth that are at risk of developing tooth decay
  • cleaning plaque, staining and tartar from teeth
  • fillings to restore teeth that have been affected by tooth decay
  • extractions to remove teeth that have been badly affected by tooth decay.

If you require further assistance, please call the Adolescent Oral Health Coordinator on (04) 570 9273 or email

Starting college next year?

If your child is currently in Year 8, this is the last year they will have their dental check at a Bee Healthy Dental Clinic or Mobile Van. At the beginning of Year 9, your child’s dental care will be transferred to an adolescent dental care provider, this may include your current family dentist.

  The transfer process is easy:

  • In year 8, your child will bring home a letter with the name of an approved adolescent dental provider they have chosen to continue their dental care from year 9 until they turn 18 years old (this is done with the support of their Bee Healthy dental therapist).
  • You may change to another approved adolescent dental provider or, to your current family dentist, by calling 04 570 9273 or emailing, and leaving your child's name, date of birth and the name of the provider you have chosen. If your current family dentist is not listed in the directory, your child’s dental care may not be free. Please discuss with your dentist.
  • Once you and your child are happy with the provider you have chosen… it’s all done! You will be contacted by your new dental provider at the start of year 9 to enrol with their practice and book an appointment.

New to the Greater Wellington Region?

Contact one of the dentists on this list directly to enrol your child to receive free dental care from Year 9 until 18th birthday.

No longer at school?

Dental care is still FREE until your child's 18th birthday even if they are no longer at school. If they not already enrolled with an approved adolescent dental provider, contact one of the dentists on this list to enrol with them directly.

Dental care for those 18 year olds and over

You have to pay privately for the majority of dental services if you are 18 years and over. It’s important to remember that there is no fixed fee or recommended fee structure for private dentists. Dental practices set their fees based on various factors such as:

  • the location of the practice
  • whether it is a specialist or general dental practice
  • whether there are advanced equipment or techniques used to provide treatment.

If cost affects whether or not you can see a dentist, we recommend that you shop around and ask about the fees for the services and treatment you require.

Dental services funded for adults

A limited range of dental services are funded for some adults.

  • People with disabilities or medical conditions such as mouth cancer may be referred to a hospital for their dental treatment by their usual dental practitioner or GP.
  • People on low incomes who have a Community Services Card may be able to get emergency dental care, such as pain relief or extractions.

These services are provided by public hospitals or dentists contracted by Health New Zealand. You may still need to pay some of the treatment cost.

People on the benefit or low incomes support requiring immediate and urgent dental treatment through a private dentist may be able to apply for financial support to cover the cost treatment up to $1000 through Work and Income. For more information visit: