If your child needs braces, the fast approaching summer vacation is often a great time to start treatment. Family schedules tend to be more relaxed during summer vacation, making it easier to fit in extra dental appointments while giving your child time to adjust to life with braces before the onset of the new school year. Whether you have a treatment plan in hand or are just beginning your search for an orthodontist, chances are you’re also thinking about the cost of braces and wondering what options you might have to help you get them. pay without breaking the bank.
The cost of braces
On average, braces cost at least $5,000 to $6,000, with orthodontic treatments typically spanning one to three years. Although sometimes the total cost of having braces is more than just the braces. It may be wise to keep in mind that additional expenses may arise throughout the treatment, such as the need for additional cleanings, bleaching or bracing treatments, which may not be included in the initial cost. You can ask your child’s orthodontist if they plan any additional procedures to help you better plan financially.
Pay for orthodontic treatment
If you have dental insurance, this may be a good place to start the financial planning part of braces. Check your coverage details to find out what your plan covers and how much they pay for braces, plus any accompanying procedures your orthodontist may anticipate. Some dental insurance plans focus only on preventative care, while others may cover orthodontics only if deemed medically necessary. If braces are included in your insurance, you may be able to save money on braces until you reach your annual maximum coverage cap, which is usually $1,000 to $1,500 per year. year.
If you don’t have dental insurance, or if your insurance doesn’t cover orthodontics to the extent you’d hoped, there are other options you may want to consider.
Pay full price
Teeth alignment issues can be hereditary, so if you’ve been saving money in anticipation of your child’s need, paying the full price out of your own pocket may be a viable option for you. If these savings were paid into a Health Savings Account or Flexible Spending Account, you may also qualify for tax savings.
Buy dental insurance
If you do not have dental insurance or your current plan does not include braces, you may consider researching dental insurance plans that offer such benefits. If purchasing a new dental insurance plan is your preference, it’s a good idea to ask how long after purchase you can use your plan on braces. Often, dental insurance cannot be used immediately for treatments such as braces. This may not be a problem if you are in the initial phase of seeking braces and have some time before treatment begins.
Join a dental savings plan
A Dental Savings Plan can be a good option if your child’s treatment is starting soon, as activation takes just 1-3 business days. These plans are an affordable alternative to dental insurance that offers plan members half of their dental bill, based on extensive customer surveys, on most dental procedures at any participating dentist, orthodontist or other specialist. , at national scale. Plan members can save up to 46% on braces*, but it’s always best to confirm coverage with your orthodontist.
Although orthodontic treatment may cause your child some discomfort, it doesn’t have to hurt them financially. As you and your family prepare to wear braces, remember that you have a variety of options. With a little thought, you can find what best suits your family’s needs and budget.
*Average cost obtained from DentalPlans.com procedure finder.