How to Plan for the Cost of Braces

If you suspect your child may need braces, prepare for spending thousands of dollars. It is vital that you plan effectively to properly budget them.

“When I got braces, they hurt hurt a little bit at first. But it really wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be,” says braces patient Kelsey Vergon.

Kelsey and her two brothers have all wore braces or retainers. Their mother, Tamara Vergon, was surprised by the cost.

She says, “Orthodontia can be expensive. My husband always jokes that that’s his motorcycle in their mouths.  The motorcycle that he won’t have now for a while.  They were all about the same and the total was between 18 and 20 thousand dollars for all three.  So it was very expensive.”

Angie Hicks from Angie’s List explains, “When planning for the cost of braces, you need to think about the entire process of getting braces. A lot of times people think about the cost for the braces alone, but there could be dental work that needs to be done ahead of time, So keep that in mind. Do they need any teeth pulled or a deep cleaning? Also, don’t forget a lot of times after braces there is a retainer that children need to wear. If they lose it, you’re going to add that to your bill as well.”

Tamara describes her own personal experience, saying, “My son had taken it out and covered it with a napkin and just forgot, and we ran back in and we did go through the restaurant garbage. We did find it and sterilize it and it do upset him that he never lost it again.”

Dr. Robert A. Stoner, who is a DDS/Orthodontist, states, “All patients get retainers when the braces come off. Most patients get removable retainers and they wear the top retainer full time for about six months to a year and I have them wear the bottom retainer every night.”

Hicks also adds, “When selecting your orthodontist, you don’t want to rely on price alone. Braces will typically cost anywhere from $4,000 to $7,000. Also check the credentials of the orthodontist. How long have they been practicing? Are they are member of the American Board of Orthodontists, and do they accept your insurance? These are all important factors in making your decision.”

Not all orthodontists are going to charge the same price, so be a savvy consumer and shop around. In addition, be sure to ask if the price of the braces is negotiable.