Should You Offer Dental Coverage to Your Employees?

Should You Offer Dental Coverage to Your Employees?

When choosing which benefits to offset employee expenses, finding a balance between coverage and affordability is essential for any organization. While some benefits are common to expect, others are seen by many employers as impractical luxuries. Although it can be tempting to exclude ‘extras’ like dental coverage,  it’s important to understand all sides of the need versus luxury equation.

Certainly, avoiding overspending on benefits is an important consideration. Still, many employers need to understand the full potential of the gains to their businesses that offering their employees more robust coverage can bring. Let’s look at the pros and cons of offering dental care to employees. 

Extended Health vs. Dental Coverage

Unlike dental coverage, some form of extended health benefits is a nearly universal standard of coverage for employers in Canada. While federal and provincial laws cover many basic health costs, more than 90% of Canadian employers still offer some form of employee extended health care benefits to supplement the government health insurance. 

On the other hand, dental coverage is far less common. A report found that nearly one-third of Canadians did not receive dental insurance from any source, neither from their employers nor from an independent insurance provider. The number climbs even higher in lower income brackets, with half of lower-income Canadians not having any sort of dental coverage. 

Should Your Company Offer Dental Coverage?

The statistic above may make it seem like dental coverage is a luxury rather than an essential part of employee benefits plans. However, employers offering some form of dental coverage are at a significant advantage compared to those that do not. 

In addition to attracting new talent and retaining existing staff, employees are considerably more productive due to investing in their oral health. In fact, a 2017 report estimated that 4.15 million working days were lost annually due to dental visits or dental sick days in Canada alone. 

Along with avoiding the need for time off, adding benefits like dental coverage can meaningfully boost employee satisfaction. Aside from the intangible benefits of increased morale, studies have shown that satisfied employees can be up to 20% more productive if provided dental coverage. 

Types of Dental Coverage

Even after you’ve established that you want to offer dental benefits to your employees, choosing the right plan is essential. When selecting a dental plan to offer, you can purchase three basic levels of dental coverage for your employees – each dependent on your budget.

Basic and Preventative

These plans include treatments considered fundamental to oral health, such as cleaning, fillings, and x-rays. 

Major and Restorative

Moving to the next level brings coverage for other, more intensive treatments. Major and restorative coverage usually includes procedures like caps and crowns. 


The most comprehensive (but least common) plans extend to orthodontics. When offered, these benefits usually have a 50% deductible and a cap on benefits payable. 

Creating the Perfect Employee Benefits Plan With Zarmac

Zarmac Benefits has been providing benefit programs to both new and established businesses for over 20 years. We take the time to analyze what you need and customize a benefits package specifically for your business style, now and for the future. 

Zarmac provides substantial analysis specific to your business to deliver real choices, advise on trends, streamline renewals, and optimize your plan design. We make it easy for you and your team by supporting the management of your program. We also proactively educate and eliminate questions to ensure there are no surprises.
Ready to protect your business and your team? Find out more about the Zarmac difference!


We have some exciting news at Zarmac Benefits! We are extremely pleased to announce our merger with Marquee Benefits Inc., a highly respected benefit and pension solutions consultant based in Barrie, Ontario. Our newly combined firm will be conducting its practice as Marquee Benefits Inc., effective February 13, 2024.

Marquee Benefits shares the same values as we do. A genuine approach based on extensive knowledge of the industry and genuine desire to help create the right benefit solution for your organization. Please feel free to connect with us if you have any questions.

You will be redirected to the Marquee Benefits website shortly or, click to be redirected now.