Pay for the dental team in the NHS

Most jobs in the NHS are covered by the Agenda for Change (AfC) pay rates. 

This pay system covers all staff except doctors, dentists and the most senior managers. See our pay for dentists page for details of what dentists earn at different stages of their training and career.


In AfC the NHS job evaluation system determines a points score which is used to match jobs to one of the nine pay bands and determine levels of basic salary. 

Each of the nine pay band has a number of pay points. Staff will normally progress to the next pay point annually until they reach the top of the pay band. In addition to basic pay, there is also extra pay for staff who work in high cost areas such as around London.

What do dental care professionals earn?

The following information gives an indication of which Agenda for Change pay bands certain job titles fit into and is based on the nationally produced job profiles. It can be used as a guide to the levels of pay, but please note that some job vacancies advertised in the NHS may carry very slightly different job titles to those provided here.

Pay for dental care professionals

As a dental care professional, your career in the dental team could start at Agenda for Change band 2 as a clinical support worker (dentistry). Depending on your role, there are opportunities rising up to band 8a-c for managerial level posts.

dental nurse at entry level would typically start on band 3, rising to band 5 for a dental nurse specialist. 

An oral health practitioner (dental hygiene/dental therapy) would typically start on band 5, with an oral health practitioner specialist (dental hygiene/dental therapy) at band 6 and an oral health practitioner advanced (dental hygiene/dental therapy) at band 7.

A dental technician would typically start their career at band 5 with a dental technician specialist at band 6 and a dental technician advanced at band 7.

A dental laboratory manager would typically be on bands 8a-c.

View the latest Agenda for Change pay rates

Terms and conditions may vary for those dental care professionals not directly employed by the NHS.

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