Dental fees can vary considerably by dentist, by city and by region. Typically, the larger the metropolitan area, the higher the average fee. For example, in cities with populations exceeding one million, a general practitioner’s fees, on average, will be in the top quartile of the national average. For routine oral exams, the price difference between a smaller city or town and a larger metropolitan area is slight, probably less than twenty dollars. On the other hand, for more expensive procedures, such as a crown or orthodontics, the difference can be more than a hundred dollars per crown.

Even within a city, dental fees can vary substantially from professional to professional. Like most professional services, dental services are not a commodity that is the same no matter where you buy it. There are several factors that cause fees to vary among dentists, including the practitioner’s level of training, education and experience, their ability to take on new patients, their specialization and whether or not insurance is involved. Some dentists also participate in member-only dental plan programs that offer reduced rates (link to dental plan programs).

The fees schedule below is based on national averages for typical procedures in larger metropolitan areas. They are only approximations and should not be relied upon for a precise estimate. In estimating your likely actual costs, you should take into account that these fees do not reflect the cost of an anesthesia (to deaden the pain), which is involved in a majority of procedures and can add approximately another $100 to the procedure cost. Similarly, even routine oral exams are often accompanied by X-rays, and with procedures involving dental restoration there will be dental lab fees that will be added to the cost. Laboratory costs can be substantial. For example, dental lab fees for crowns can range from a couple hundred dollars (per tooth) to almost one thousand dollars.

The best way to get an accurate estimate of a more complicated procedure is to request an estimate from the dentist. If you are considering an expensive procedure, it probably would be a good idea to get more than one estimate.

Cost Estimates for General Practitioner

Adult $93
Child $70
Sealant (per tooth) $93
Flouride Application $39
Temporary $317
Porcelain $1,152
Stainless Steel $270
Fixed $2,680
Removable (upper/lower $1,633
Replace/repair denture (per tooth) $182
Simple $167
Surgical $273
One surface $135
Three surfaces $204
Night guard $553
Root Canals
Anterior $745
Molar $1,040
Oral Exam
Simple $49
Comprehensive $83
X-Rays (complete series) $134