The high cost of orthodontic treatment is not something that every American can afford. Research shows that more than 60% of Americans have less than $1,000 available for an emergency medical expense.
However, research also shows that around 80% of Americans need orthodontic treatment. If you're suffering from gap teeth, overcrowding, or crooked teeth, it could end up costing you more in medical fees later in life.
Problems with your teeth can end up causing issues like bruxism or grinding. As a result, you'll spend more money on trying to salvage your teeth at a later stage. Correcting your smile now will save you time, money, and plenty of hassle later in life.
However, what do you do if you don't have the money to cover your treatment right now? Let's look at a few options to help you pay for your braces.
Buy Dental Insurance
Some dental plans for teens and kids will cover issues like orthodontics. If you're looking for braces for your kids, check your policy. Call your broker if you need some advice on interpreting the terms and conditions of your policy agreement.
Ask for Discount
Orthodontists realize that most people don't have thousands of dollars lying around in their bank account. Therefore, many of them are willing to negotiate a payment plan. Most orthodontists won't have any problem issuing you with a 90-day account to pay for your braces.
Don't be shy to ask for financial assistance. If you have more than one child in need of braces, then the ortho can arrange a discount.
Look for No-Interest Financing
Many orthodontists offer you flexible payment terms on your treatment. Orthos realize that times are tough for everyone in this economy. Therefore, they're willing to plan for you if you commit to paying them.
In most cases, your doctor will ask you to make a deposit that covers the minimum cost of the lab fees involved with your treatment. For braces, that can be up to $1,000. Most orthodontist offices are willing to give you a 0% APR on your outstanding balance, as long as you pay within 6-months.
Seek Treatment from Dental Schools
If you live anywhere near a dental college, then the chances are they have an orthodontist program. Call the school and ask them if they accept patients. You can save up to 50% on your orthodontist bill by allowing students to work on you under the supervision of trained orthodontists.
However, some orthodontist schools may limit people they accept to the program, or they might have qualifying criteria. Check with your local universities and ask them to put you in touch with the dentistry program.
Look for Alternatives to Braces
Invisalign is a revolutionary new orthodontic treatment. It involves the use of retainer aligners to perform the same function as braces. However, these clear aligners don't have an unattractive look, and people will barely figure you're wearing "braces."
Invisalign treatments are available from your orthodontist, and they are generally 20% cheaper than traditional braces, depending on the work you need. Most orthodontists will be willing to work out a payment plan for your Invisalign treatment.
You'll have to make a $2,400 down payment and then settle your bill monthly with your orthodontist's office. However, Invisalign offers you all the benefits of orthodontic treatment, without any of the adverse visual aspects of having metal in your mouth.
Speak to your orthodontist today about how Invisalign treatment can save you money on your braces.