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Dental Health for Children and Youth 0-17

As young teeth develop and oral habits form, it's essential to instill proper dental care practices early on. Dental health for children and youth 0-17 years of age focuses on creating positive experiences, oral hygiene education, and providing gentle, attentive care to set the stage for a lifetime of vibrant smiles.

Healthy Smiles Ontario (HSO)

Healthy Smiles Ontario (HSO) is a free dental program for eligible children and youth 17 years old and under.  Good oral health is important to the overall health of children and youth.  

The program includes regular visits to a licensed dental provider and covers the costs of treatment including:

  • check-ups
  • cleaning
  • fillings (for a cavity)
  • x-rays
  • scaling
  • tooth extraction
  • urgent or emergency dental care (including treatment of a child’s toothache or tooth pain)

NOTE: Cosmetic dentistry, including teeth whitening and braces, are not covered by the program.

You can apply for your children if they:

  • are 17 years of age and under
  • live in Ontario
  • come from a household with an income equal to or less than the levels in the table below

Number of dependent children in your household  

Family Net Income  

1 Child  

$26,551 or lower  

2 Children  

$28,560 or lower  

3 Children  

$30,568 or lower  

4 Children  

$32,577 or lower  

5 Children  

$34,586 or lower 

6 Children  

$36,595 or lower  

7 Children  

$38, 603 or lower  

8 Children  

$40, 612 or lower  

9 Children  

$42, 621 or lower  

10 or more children  

$44, 630 or lower 

Add $ 2, 009 for each individual dependent child to determine the income level at which your family would qualify for the Healthy Smiles Ontario  

Children are automatically enrolled in the program if:

  • they receive assistance under:
    • Temporary Care Assistance
    • Assistance for Children with Severe Disabilities
  • they or their family receive:
    • Ontario Works
    • Ontario Disability Support

Ontario Works recipients living in a First Nations community

Your children are not automatically enrolled in Healthy Smiles Ontario if you receive Ontario Works and live in a First Nations community.

Please apply by mail to enroll your children.


  • Applicant must be assessed for emergency/essential needs. 
  • Attest to financial hardship. 

How to Apply 

  • Through participating dental provider’s office or by contacting the Health Unit at 1-866-888-4577  ext. 1247

Coverage Period 

  • Child/youth will be eligible 12-months from their date of enrollment. After 12-months they will need to re-apply and re-assessed. 


Apply online or call the Health Unit 1-866-888-4577 ext.1247 for an application.

Canada Dental Benefit

The interim Canada Dental Benefit is intended to help lower dental costs for eligible families earning less than $90,000 per year. Parents and guardians may be eligible if they pay for dental care for a child under 12 years old who does not have access to a private dental insurance plan.

Depending on your adjusted family net income, a tax-free payment of $260, $390, or $650 is available for each eligible child. You can apply for a maximum of 2 payments per child.

Applications are open until June 30, 2024 for:

  • dental care received between July 1, 2023 and June 30, 2024
  • one additional payment if you meet the criteria

You can no longer apply for the original payment for dental care received between October 1, 2022 and June 30, 2023.

Benefit payments are administered by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).

Click here for more information.

Contact Us!

Call us for more information or to book into one of our clinics. Appointments are required, as walk-ins are not currently available.

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