You only get one chance to make a first impression. If you don’t have the perfect smile and want to correct it without the glare of traditional, metal braces you may be considering Invisalign. Invisalign cost can vary and there are a number of factors that can make it a viable and affordable option for you.
What is Invisalign?
Invisalign is a custom made clear aligner that is changed out every two weeks for around 6 to 18 months or longer if needed. Each aligner is specifically designed for the individual patient and gently shifts the teeth to the desired position. As the teeth shift, a new aligner is made and used to continue the movement until the teeth are exactly where they need to be.
The Benefits of Invisalign
Invisalign trays are much less noticeable than traditional braces and tend to be much more comfortable for the patient. Because they are easily removable, they do not interfere with your day to day activities such as eating or brushing your teeth. Unlike braces, they are removed when eating, so you can still enjoy things like hard candy, taffy, and popcorn without worrying about damaging your dental work.
Cleaning your teeth and gums is much easier with Invisalign because the apparatus is removed. When you are wearing traditional braces it can be challenging to clean all the nooks and crannies around the brackets and wires.
Invisalign aligners also tend to be gentler on the rest of your mouth, such as your cheeks and gum when compared to the metal wires and brackets of braces. The aligner material is much softer and is not prone to breaking and leaving pointy wires or sharp edges sticking out.
It is also easier to see the treatment plan in full from the very beginning. Because Invisalign trays are custom made and changed out biweekly your dental team can show you exactly how your teeth will progress until your desired results are achieved. Traditional braces can be more challenging and involve more trial and error.
A full set of Invisalign costs on average $5,000. Traditional metal braces average between $3,000 and $7,000. There are many factors that go into determining the final cost of braces including the length of time they are needed, the number of repairs and how quickly your teeth shift.
Here are ways to make Invisalign affordable for you:
- Insurance: You should also check with your insurance company. If they provide coverage for metal braces they will typically also cover Invisalign. Keep in mind, most insurance plans do not cover cosmetic procedures but may cover a portion of medically necessary procedures. Also, if possible you will want to maintain the same insurance plan throughout the duration of treatment. If you switch plans midway through you may run the risk of the new provider categorizing your orthodontia as a pre-existing condition and not providing coverage.
- Payment plans: Most dentists and orthodontists will also work with your budget and help you with monthly payment plans to enable you to pay for your treatment. With children, early intervention can help you determine what is needed and budget accordingly.
- Flex spending: If you have healthcare through your employer, you may be able to utilize a flexible spending account (FSA). You contribute pretax dollars to an FSA and can, in turn, use that money for items such as copays, deductibles, and medical costs. Your employer may even make contributions to your FSA, although this is legally required.
- Health Savings Account (HSA): An HSA works similarly to an FSA, in that it allows you to set aside tax free dollars to use towards medical expenses. This type of savings account is used in conjunction with a high deductible health insurance policy.
Limitations of Invisalign
While there are many benefits to Invisalign, this type of treatment is not designed for everyone. If you have teeth that need more severe adjustments, such as very crooked teeth or teeth that sit at different heights, traditional braces and possibly other treatments will more effective. This is because it is more difficult for plastic to shift the teeth into complex movements. The more complex your needs, the less likely Invisalign is the option for you.
Your age may also play a part in choosing the rental dental solution. Older teenagers and adults are good Invisalign candidates because their teeth have come in and are fully developed. Younger teens and children still have plenty of growing to do, meaning the plastic trays may not be as effective. Maturity and responsibility also play an important role. Invisalign needs to be worn at least 22 hours a day to work. Young children may take advantage of being able to remove the aligners without remembering to put them back in. This could significantly delay the process and if taken to the extreme make the aligners entirely ineffective.
If your teeth need moderate adjustments and you want a nearly invisible, flexible option, Invisalign might be perfect for you. The key to effective treatment is to work with a professional team that can help you meet your goals. Contact our office today and we’ll formulate the best treatment plan possible for your specific needs and goals.