Easier Access to Free Dental Services

 In Health

Ontario Expands free dental care for eligible children and youth by providing easier access to free dental services through the Healthy Smiles Ontario Dental Program for children and youth 17 and under from low-income families.

As of January 1, 2016, the following six publicly funded dental programs have been combined into the new Healthy Smiles Ontario program:

Dental benefits for children under Ontario Works
Dental benefits for children under the Ontario Disability Support Program
Dental benefits for children under the Assistance for Children with Severe Disabilities Program
The Children In Need Of Treatment Program
Healthy Smiles Ontario
Preventive oral health services provided by local public health units.
Who is eligible?

Children and youth 17 and under may be eligible if:

They are residents of Ontario; and
They are members of a household that meets the income eligibility requirements.
Note: Children 17 and under are automatically eligible and enrolled in Healthy Smiles Ontario when they or their family receive Ontario Works, Temporary Care assistance, Assistance for Children with Severe Disabilities, or the Ontario Disability Support Program. As well, children and youth with other dental insurance coverage are no longer automatically excluded.

How do I enrol?

You can enrol by going to ontario.ca/healthysmiles or by calling ServiceOntario INFOline toll-free at 1-844-296-6306 (TTY toll-free at 1-800-387-5559). Your local public health unit can also help with your enrolment. Go to ontario.ca/healthysmiles to find out which public health unit serves your area.

Once enrolment has been confirmed you will receive a Healthy Smiles Ontario dental card. This card should be presented to your dental provider at each visit to receive dental care under the program.

Where can children access dental care including emergency dental care?

If children have a dentist, parents can contact their office to find out if they participate in Healthy Smiles Ontario. If they do not have a dentist, parents can contact their local public health unit for help. Go to ontario.ca/healthysmiles to find out which public health unit serves your area.

What services are covered?

Healthy Smiles Ontario covers regular visits to a licensed dental provider, such as a dentist or dental hygienist. It covers dental services including check-ups, cleaning, fillings, X-rays and scaling. Urgent or emergency oral health issues are also covered by Healthy Smiles Ontario.

Why is oral health important?

Cavities and gum disease can be painful and can lead to serious issues, affecting the growth of adult teeth. Pain can result in loss of sleep, affect a child’s ability to eat and can impact a child’s ability to learn and attend school. But cavities and gum disease can be prevented with good oral health which is important for a child’s self-esteem, sense of well-being and their overall health.

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