Happy New Year! It’s January 2012 and this month, I’ll be answering one dozen of the most common questions I receive as an orthodontist. Every year, this question is at the top of the list : How much do braces cost? Simple question with a not-so-simple answer. The cost of braces varies depending on your treatment needs and case difficulty. Got a perfect bite with one crooked tooth? Don’t expect to pay as much as someone who needs years of bite correction and jaw alignment, in addition to tooth straightening.
Braces aren’t like milk or bread. One doesn’t “pick them up” at the store and pay the same price for everyone in the family. Your children or spouse might have a unique orthodontic problem that requires additional care and a larger investment. Be sure to ask your dentist for a referral to an orthodontic specialist, a dentist who has 2-3 years of additional training (beyond dental school) in the proper way to straighten and align teeth and jaws. Your specialist will be able to provide a treatment recommendation and estimate of cost after reviewing some basic diagnostic data (like x-rays and photographs of your teeth and jaws).
Still scratching your head? For a comprehensive case length of 24 months, in the United States, plan on paying somewhere between $4,500 and $10,000 for braces. Custom appliances, clear aligners, and esthetic options might cost more. Don’t get nervous. Your child might only require a retainer or no treatment at all. You won’t know until you ask a specialist.
Still have questions? Check out my latest book “Stop Hiding Your Smile! A Parent’s Guide to Confidently Choosing an Orthodontist” or visit my website at http://www.burlesonorthodontics.com and sign up for a free report “The 10 Ten Things You Must Know Before Getting Braces or Invisalign.”
Here’s to your Spectacular Smile!
Dustin Burleson, DDS