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National Insurance and Dental Care

 
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kah5217



Joined: 29 Sep 2012
Posts: 255
Location: Ibaraki

PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2013 4:55 am    Post subject: National Insurance and Dental Care Reply with quote

How does the national insurance fare when it comes to dentistry? Are reasonable charges covered?

I ask because I tend to get a lot of cavities due to weak teeth, even when I scale back the sugar. Should one of my teeth break while I'm in Japan and I would end up needing it pulled or work done, would that be covered? Or in the very unlikely situation that my wisdom tooth decides to poke out, and I need surgery?
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mitsui



Joined: 10 Jun 2007
Posts: 449
Location: Kawasaki

PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2013 9:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I pay either 20% or 30% of the cost.

I would not worry. You just need to find a good dentist.
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qwertyu2



Joined: 13 Mar 2012
Posts: 93

PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2013 4:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dental expenses are not too bad in Japan. However, expect to make several trips for what would normally get finished in one visit back home.
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Glenski



Joined: 15 Jan 2003
Posts: 12844
Location: Hokkaido, JAPAN

PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2013 12:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

General dental work is covered like is most medical. Contact your ward office or city hall (many of them post this in English online, too) to see what may not be covered. From what I've read online, it says "Unnecessary dental check-ups or cleaning (including gold-plating)" are not paid for.

See more from this typical page from Nagoya:
http://www.nic-nagoya.or.jp/en/e/archives/3304

Sounds like you don't need anything special, though.
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Pitarou



Joined: 16 Nov 2009
Posts: 890
Location: Narita, Japan

PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2013 5:47 am    Post subject: Re: National Insurance and Dental Care Reply with quote

kah5217 wrote:
How does the national insurance fare when it comes to dentistry? Are reasonable charges covered?

Yes, they are. If memory serves, national insurance pays 70-80%.
kah5217 wrote:
I ask because I tend to get a lot of cavities due to weak teeth, even when I scale back the sugar.

Me too. My dentist says it's something to do with the consistency of my saliva.

Coming from the UK, I was pleasantly surprised at how cheap dentists are. I usually pay about 2000 yen per visit. However, the dentists do tend to space out work over multiple sessions. I'm happy with that, but I'm sure I'm paying more than I would if I'd had everything done at once.

Standards are pretty high, but not consistent, so you should ask for recommendations. I have read that, outside of the big hospitals, the Japanese medical system has a problem with lack of external supervision and mandatory ongoing training. So, all things being equal, you should probably go with the younger dentists because they are more likely to be up-to-date on current best practices.
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