If you or your child needs orthodontia, brace yourself because it will cost you thousands. There are ways however, to prepare your bank account before you even set foot in an orthodontist.
Tamara Vergon’s three children all had braces and while they have beautiful teeth now, the process was long and costly.
“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 awhile,” explained Vergon.
According to the American Association of Orthodontists, treatment for braces can begin for children as young as nine-years-old. However, in most cases there is preliminary work that needs to be done which can be as important as the braces themselves.
“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,” said Angie Hicks of Angie’s list. “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 as well and if they lose it, you're going to add that to your bill as well.”
A retainer is the last major step with braces, but it could be where additional costs appear.
Dr, Robert Stoner, an orthodontist explained that children will wear a retainer for up to a year after the braces come off.
“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. Many patients will lose their retainer. What they do is they wrap it in a napkin and place it on a lunch tray and throw it away,” said Stoner.
While braces are expensive, by planning ahead and being cautious, you can have a smile that only looks like it cost a million dollars.