Do I need dental insurance to get orthodontic treatment?

We’re all familiar with braces, the orthodontic corrective appliances used to fix bite issues and straighten teeth. Generally, we find braces used by teenagers and young adults as the jaws are still growing. However, that is starting to change as more and more adults are seeking corrective orthodontic treatment.

In fact, it turns out that roughly 1 in every five new orthodontic patients is an adult! There are plenty of reasons for this, but one is the improvement in treatment methods and a growing awareness of the benefits of great orthodontic care.

Another reason braces are on the rise is that you can get the best care these days at lower prices than ever! That’s right! Relative to the rise in costs over time, braces are less expensive now than ever. But how much are they? And how does insurance factor into the overall costs?

Well, that’s what this reading is all about. Read on to learn more!

The average cost of braces without insurance

A general guide to the cost of braces without insurance is that you will likely see a price range of anywhere from $3000-$8000 dollars. Right away, most dental insurance doesn’t offer packages that cover the costs of orthodontic care for adults, but there are exceptions, and many do offer partial or full coverage for children.

We’ll go ahead and look into these prices and conditions in greater detail.

One factor that affects price ranges is the difficulty of the case. This can impact the amount of time required to successfully complete corrective therapy, the amount of work performed by Dr. Periago and the team, and additional factors that would drive the cost up to one degree or another.

Another factor would be whether or not you are considering different options such as clear (ceramic) braces or clear aligners, which can, in some circumstances, be slightly more expensive, although, at Periago Orthodontics, we are committed to working with you to develop a plan that makes sense, so no treatment should be prohibitively expensive.

As discussed, some types of braces can be more expensive than others. Let’s do a quick breakdown to see how they compare:

Traditional metal braces

Traditional metal braces employ metal brackets and wire to gently guide your teeth into their appropriate positions over anywhere from 15 months to a few years. Often the least expensive option, traditional metal braces are also the most noticeable.

Ceramic (clear) braces

These function in much the same way as traditional metal braces. However, the brackets are clear ceramic, or tooth-colored, and therefore less noticeable. This can be an appealing option if a low profile is a priority.

Clear aligners

Clear aligners are an advanced set of plastic aligning trays that fit snugly over your teeth and gently move them into position over time. Much like traditional bracketed braces, they can take anywhere from a few months to a few years to render a full course of treatment.

These benefit from the ability to remove them, meaning cleanup is easier, among other advantages.

Due to the technology involved, clear aligners tend to be slightly more expensive than traditional braces.

The average cost of braces with insurance

Generally, insurance plans tend not to offer full or partial coverage for adults. However, there are some available, and most plans do offer coverage of either some or all of the costs for children.

A major point for most insurance plans as to whether they will cover the costs of braces or similar treatment is whether the treatment is considered medically necessary. This is more commonly demonstrated in children, where the development of their growing jaw will benefit from the treatment.

Depending on the type of insurance, they may cover the costs only up to a point, for instance, 60 percent of the price of traditional metal brackets. Then, if you want to go with a more expensive option, such as clear braces or clear aligners, you will be responsible for costs exceeding 60% of the traditional prices.

Here is an example of some costs before and after insurance

Type of braces costs

Metal braces

Before insurance $3,000 to $7,500

After insurance $1,500 to $3,750

Clear braces

Before insurance $2,000 to $8,500

After insurance $1,000 to $4,750

Clear aligners

Before insurance $3,000 to $7,000

After insurance $1,500 to $3,500

More questions? Give us a call!

Thanks for taking the time to learn more about the costs associated with orthodontic treatment. Here at Periago Orthodontics, we stress that our practice is all about living in and participating as good community members here in Floyds Knobs, New Albany, and Corydon. We believe that everyone should have the opportunity to receive the best care possible! That means if you have any questions or concerns about costs, schedule a free consultation or call us today! Let’s start your smile journey together! Check out our blog for more!