How Much Do Orthodontics Cost? A Complete Guideon June 29, 2020 at 1:00 am

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A great smile is infectious. It can brighten a room, improve a mood, and serves as a powerful communication tool. Sadly, not everyone is born with their perfect smile. In fact, We at Verma Mediafound a survey that showed one in four adults surveyed reported that they avoid smiling entirely due to the condition of their mouth and teeth. The good news is that when it comes to our smiles, we aren’t stuck with what we are given. Orthodontics can intervene.

Orthodontics, or the treatment of teeth irregularities especially as it pertains to alignment, can offer powerful and lasting solutions for people who are not happy with their pearly whites. Historically. treatment has been very expensive. Jokes have been made about remortgaging homes, borrowing from college accounts, and opting for dentures rather than
face an orthodontist bill…but in recent years some diversity in the market has actually driven the prices of orthodontic treatment down. Options have also been expanded. Not too long ago the only choice orthodontic patients got to make was what color rubber bands to put on their metal braces. But today, consumers can choose from invisible aligners, metal braces, ceramic braces, and even lingual braces (which face the inside of your mouth).

Below is a guide from Verma Mediahighlighting some of the many orthodontic options available today. The list will include how treatment works, the average cost, and consumer ratings & reviews.

Invisible Aligners:

ortho 3

Invisible aligners are a relatively new and popular mechanism for straightening teeth. The aligners are totally clear and fit snugly over your teeth. Once they are in, it is difficult to tell that the wearer is using any orthodontic equipment at all. Below is a summary of some of the largest invisible aligner manufacturers operating today.

Byte:

Byte is a direct-to-consumer invisible aligner provider that straightens and whitens your teeth from the comfort of your own home, for a fraction of the price of traditional options.

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How they describe themselves:

byte is the #1 rated, doctor-directed brand in the teledentistry revolution providing customers access to at-home invisible aligners that deliver professional results in half the time and cost of traditional methods. Headquartered in Los Angeles, byte’s nationwide network of licensed orthodontists and dentists prescribe and oversee every treatment plan. At under $85 per month, byte has found a way to make the inaccessible, accessible–providing an easy, convenient and affordable way to upgrade your smile through their teledentistry platform.

How treatment works:

With byte, they send an impression kit right to your home, have a team of dental professionals create a personal 3D treatment plan for you, a licensed orthodontist assigned to each patient to review , approve and monitor the plan and send custom invisible aligners right back to your home. They also provide teeth whitener, and the HyperByte, which is an exclusive high-frequency vibration device which has been proven to cut your aligner treatment time in half. So if your treatment time would’ve been six months, with byte it would now be just three months on average for mild and moderate cases. Upon completing treatment, byte provides a retainer for night time wear to protect your investment.

Pricing:

$1,895

The impression kit is $95. If the byte team can treat you, you can either make a one-time payment of $1,895 or receive 100% credit approval to pay $83/month with a down payment of $349. If the treating orthodontist determines you are not a candidate, they will refund your money.

Consumer Ratings:

Byte holds #1 ranking on most main review sites, highlighting customer service as something they are very intentional about. For example, byte has 4.9 out of 5 stars on Consumer Affairs with 342 votes and a 9.9 out of 10 stars on Best Company with 1116 reviews

Client Review:

“My experience with Byte was great. They have personal relationships with their customers. They have helped me get the smile that I have always wanted. They are always quick to reply when I send them a email. I would def recommend this to anyone.”- Arlene on Consumer Affairs.

Invisalign:

Invisalign was the original innovator of clear aligners. In fact, they held the patents on the technology that onlyrecently expired. Invisalign treatment requires an orthodontist visit, and cannot be managed from home.

How they describe themselves:

Step 1: Meet with your doctor and get a sneak peek at your new smile. Using the iTero Element scanner, your Invisalign Doctor can take a fast and precise 3D digital scan of your teeth and map out a custom treatment plan just for you.

Step 2: Start transforming your smile right from your first fitting. This is a key step in your success. Your doctor will ensure your aligners fit well, answer your questions, and let you know what to expect.

Step 3: Keep your brand-new smile beautiful. Lasting results with our Vivera retainer. You transformed your smile with the world’s most advanced clear aligner system. Now it’s easy to keep the smile you love. Vivera retainers are custom made and 30% stronger than other retainers. (source).

How treatment works:

In order to use Invisalign, you have to visit an Invisalign-trained doctor. Invisalign employs a team of Smile Concierges that will help you to find a doctor near you. Once you complete your initial consultation, custom aligners will be made for you. You will need to wear your
aligners for 20-22 hours every day, and switch to a new set of progressive aligners every one to two weeks. You will need to schedule follow-up appointments with your Invisalign doctor every four to six weeks. Generally speaking, treatment takes 12-18 months.

Pricing:

$5,000-$8,000.

Invisalign pricing compares to the pricing for braces and can vary depending on the treating doctors in your area. Payment plans are available, but not 100% approval.

Consumer Ratings:

4.2 stars on Consumer Affairs with 16 votes and a 5.6 out of 10 on Best Company with 87 reviews.

Client Review:

“I’m no youngster but my teeth started shifting and I was biting my lip all of the time. One visit to the orthodontist and Invisalign was recommended. My ortho allowed me to pay monthly with zero interest which was really nice. My treatment was complete in less than a year. I now have invisalign retainers which I do wear EVERY night. I’m really happy with the
results!” –Catherine on Consumer Affairs.

SmileDirectClub:

SmileDirectClub was an early innovator in at-home orthodontic treatment. Today, you can opt to either go into a SmileShop for an in-person scan, or take your impressions at home and monitor your entire treatment remotely.

How they describe themselves:

Our Story: Co-founders Alex Fenkell and Jordan Katzman first met at summer camp at age 13, a time when most smiles come fully loaded with wires. The two remained friends, and years later, reflecting on Alex’s metal-mouthed youth, they decided there had to be a better and more affordable way to straighter, whiter teeth. Teaming up with Camelot Venture Group, experts in creating opportunities in highly regulated industries, they sought to democratize orthodontics with SmileDirectClub.

Founded in 2014, SmileDirectClub now represents 95% of the doctor-directed at-home clear aligner industry. We’ve helped over a million people transform their smiles – their before and happily ever after photos speak for themselves. We have grown to more than 6,300 employees with 391 SmileShop locations and counting.

A full 80% of Americans could benefit from orthodontic care, yet only 1% receive it each year, with cost being the biggest issue. SmileDirectClub exists to help bridge that gap. (source).

How treatment works:

You can either “kit” or “scan”. The kit option allows you to take your own impressions at home. The scan option is a free in-person consultation at one of their brick and mortar SmileShops. The SmileDirectClub’s team of dental professionals use either your kit or your scan to create a 3D model of your teeth and develop a treatment plan. Customized aligners are then created and sent right to you. Just wear the aligners as instructed and within 4-6 months on average, you will have the smile of your dreams.

Pricing:

$1,895

The impression kit costs $49, and after that you can either make a one-time payment of $1,895, or opt for the payment plan of $85/month with $250 down.

Consumer Ratings:

1.5 stars on Consumer Affairs with 54 reviews and a 9.5 out of 10 stars on Best Company with 1070 reviews.

Client Review:

“SmileDirect is awesome. Wish I’d known about it before my kids were bilked for thousands through their dentist. I financed through them too. Took about 9 mos to straighten out my “snaggleteeth” smile. Got retainers through them as well. It was fast easier, much faster, and faster less expensive than going through a traditional orthodontist (or even getting invisalign through the dentist)!!-Marika on Consumer Affairs

ClearCorrect:

ClearCorrect was founded by a dentist who wanted a better invisible aligner solution for his patients. The aligners are provided through ClearCorrect dental partners, and are not available direct-to-consumer.

How they describe themselves:

Hey! We’re ClearCorrect Nice to meet you. ClearCorrect was founded back in 2006 by a dentist who had over 400 patients that needed to finish their clear aligner treatment, but no one to make the aligners for them. So Dr. Willis Pumphrey went the extra mile for his patients: he founded his own company to make aligners for them. One by one, other dentists signed up to try Dr.Pumphrey’s solution, and ClearCorrect started to grow. Today, ClearCorrect has served tens of thousands of dentists all over the world and has delivered literally millions of aligners to their patients. Through it all, we’ve made it our priority to listen to our providers, and to put their needs first. That’s what’s kept us in business for over 12 years, and that’s how we know we’ll always be here. (source).

How treatment works:

You will have to visit a dentist who is a registered ClearCorrect provider. Based on your dentist’s prescription, custom aligners will be created. Once your aligners arrive, you will wear them for 22 hours a day, 7 days a week, and you will need to schedule follow-up appointments with your provider. Every case includes interactive 3D treatment previews.

Pricing:

$2,500-$5,500.

ClearCorrect offers a variety of pricing options, but the first step will always be a treatment preview that will tell you how many steps are involved in your treatment plan. Once you know that, you have a choice of three payment plans: Flex, One, and Unlimited. Under the Flex plan you pay for every step of the treatment you approve and each aligner and retainer that you
request. Under the One plan, you pay a flat rate that covers up to 24 sets of aligners and includes one revision and one retainer. Under the Unlimited plan, you pay a flat rate that covers everything you may need for up to five years.

Consumer Ratings:

No new reviews on Consumer Affairs and a 3.1 out of 10 on Best Company with 10 reviews.

Client Review:

“I’m only 2 months into treatment so I can’t judge the final alignment, but. I have to sand down the sharp edges of every set before I can wear them properly” –Steve on Consumer
Advocate.

Candid:

Candid offers invisible aligners that can be monitored remotely. You can either complete an Impression kit at-home or go in for an in-office scan. Following the initial scan, you scan your own teeth from home and have them monitored from a dedicated team of orthodontists.

How they describe themselves:

Our Mission. Everyone deserves to feel like they can confidently express themselves — but for millions of people, their teeth are in the way. By eliminating barriers to orthodontic treatment and providing the highest standard of care, we empower people to change their lives. Straighter teeth are just the start.

Our Story. Once upon a time, five of us started talking about our teeth. We all wished they were straighter, but like millions of other people, we didn’t want to pay over $5,000 for treatment. Besides, braces were not an option. (Especially for Lilla, who had already had them twice.)

We looked into the aligner industry, and we knew we could make a difference. So we partnered with a world-class orthodontist, Dr. C. Lynn Hurst, and founded Candid. Our first
office was in Andy Warhol’s old apartment. Then we moved to another apartment. It was all very cozy. Tens of thousands of patients and 300 employees later, we don’t have meetings on bunk beds anymore. But the spirit of what we’re doing hasn’t changed since those early days, and it never will. (source).

How treatment works:

After sending in your impressions or completing an in-office scan, Candid’s orthodontic team will review and create your treatment. Next, you are sent your clear aligners along with everything you will need for treatment. As your treatment progresses, you take scans from your phone that are reviewed remotely by Candid orthodontists. This is a simple mix of in-office and remote treatment.

Pricing:

$2,400.

You can make a one-time payment of $2,400 or put $399 down and pay $99/month for 24 months, if approved by financing company.

Consumer Ratings:

No new reviews on Consumer Affairs and a 7.6 out of 10 on Best Company with 102 reviews.

Client Review:

“I received my aligners yesterday. I couldn’t get my bottom to fix, called my personal advisor, she told me how to adjust it. Now it’s working. I read all the negative reviews, this has not been my experience with CandidCo. Granted, I have a long treatment time, it could change, for now I’m happy.” –Cherie on Consumer Advocate.

SnapCorrect:

SnapCorrect is another direct-to-consumer invisible aligner company that prides themselves in creating truly invisible aligners.

How they describe themselves:

We believe in making the world a happier place, one smile at a time! At SnapCorrect we aim to provide the clearest and fastest way to your perfect smile. Our friendly team will guide you through the process of creating great dental impressions and Smile Selfies that aid our
dedicated dental experts in crafting accurate, customized aligners tailored to your smile.

We also save you thousands of dollars while providing Truly Invisible Aligners. We are able to do this by combining the latest in advanced dental technology and tele-dentistry, which makes repeated expensive and inconvenient visits to a dental or orthodontist’s office for metal braces or Invisalign(R) unnecessary.

Not only can we straighten your teeth, but we can make them pearly white as well, with a complimentary dental foam and a gel home whitening kit that both come with your aligners.

Now let the smiling begin! (source).

How treatment works:

You are sent an impression kit to take your own impressions with and are instructed on taking a series of photos of your teeth. Once your initial impressions and photos have been reviewed, aligners are sent right to your home and you proceed with treatment independently.

Pricing:

$1,749.

There are no hidden fees. Your payment includes a custom-molded set of aligners for each step of your treatment plan. You can either make a one time payment of $1,749 or pay roughly $80 a month at a 10-30% APR.

Consumer Ratings:

No reviews to publish from Consumer Affairs or Best Company.

Client Review:

“Snap correct was very affordable and offered financing through Affirm. The customer service is exceptional. The aligners are very clear. The only downside is that you would probably get a better fit if a dentist performed the initial impression of your teeth.” –Kim on Trust Pilot.

Braces:

Braces are what most people think of when they think of orthodontic treatment. They are visible in the mouth and are often prescribed to adolescents and teenagers, but can be worn by adults as well. Below is a list of different types of braces available on the market currently.

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Metal Braces:

This is the most universally available option. When it comes to metal braces, there are many manufacturers including companies likeAmerican Orthodontics andAuradontics, Inc. That being said no single brand name stands out with significant differentiators. Our analysis here will be of the metal braces as a category, rather than as individual brands.

How treatment works:

Metal braces must be put on by a professional orthodontist. If you choose to get metal braces, brackets will be bonded directly to the front of your teeth. Arch wires are then installed. These wires are attached to the brackets with rubber bands and provide a track to guide the movement of your teeth. The whole idea behind metal braces is to provide small
but continuous pressure that moves your teeth into alignment. Depending on your specific case, your orthodontist may also include spacers, orthodontic bands, and headgear with your treatment. This type of treatment requires frequent check-ins with an orthodontist, and treatment can last anywhere from one to three years.

Pricing:

$4,000-$7,000.

The final bill will depend on the specific amount of work required in your mouth and on how long the braces stayed in place. In general, you will be paying for consultations, professional cleanings, check-up visits, dental x-rays, the braces themselves, and retainers.

Ceramic Braces:

Ceramic braces function similarly to metal braces, but they are more aesthetically pleasing. If you aren’t a fan of the way braces look, you can opt for ceramic brackets that match the color of your teeth. You can also get ceramic brackets in any color, so if you want to draw attention to your mouth in a fun way, you can! The downside is that they can be more brittle than metal braces, and treatment can take a bit longer. Like metal braces, there are many manufacturers like 3M Oral Care andRocky Mountain Orthodontics, but their differentiators are minimal.

How treatment works:

Ceramic braces follow the same exact treatment process as metal braces. See above section for details.

Pricing:

$5,000-$8,000.

Ceramic braces are consistently $1,000-$2,000 more than traditional metal braces.

Lingual Braces:

If you are completely opposed to visible braces, you may be able to have lingual braces installed. These braces are installed behind the teeth and face your tongue, and therefore are completely invisible when you smile. They are fantastic aesthetically, but are more difficult to install and more difficult to adjust, and so they may not be an option for everyone.

How treatment works:

Just like with metal and ceramic braces, you will need to visit an orthodontist to have lingual braces installed. They are more difficult to work with, so it may be challenging to find an orthodontist who is experienced or even willing to install lingual braces.

Pricing:

$8,000-$10,000.

They are more difficult to work with and so orthodontists charge accordingly. Lingual braces are the most expensive non-surgical option.

So no matter how much improvement your smile needs, there are options available for you. Find the orthodontic treatments that speaks to you and start working on that smile!

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