Are your teeth beginning to shift? Do you have crowding or gaps between your chompers that are becoming unsightly? Many people need affordable braces at some point in their lives, but it can be trickier for adults to find less expensive options. Believe it or not, braces may not be as out of your budget as you think. With a little research and creativity, you can find the perfect braces for you within your budget.
Here are some ways you can find affordable braces for adults.
Types of Braces
Adults often shy away from braces because they don’t want to be seen in traditional metal braces that are often associated with teens. These are a fast and inexpensive option, but they may not help you convey the image you want to project.
There are other options available that adult braces wearers prefer.
One of these is ceramic braces, which have tooth-colored or clear brackets that blend in with your natural teeth color. Some styles also use tooth-colored wires.
Ceramic braces are slightly more expensive than traditional wire braces. They also require a more mature wearer to care for them. Food stuck behind ceramic brackets is easy to see.
Many adults also prefer Invisalign, a series of clear plastic aligners that are replaced every two weeks. These gradually shift your teeth into place.
Invisalign is more expensive than traditional braces and requires frequent trips to your orthodontist. Some folks enjoy the fact that they can eat whatever they want with Invisalign because aligners can get removed when you eat and drink.
Lingual braces are the most expensive option. These are brackets fixed to the back of your teeth so they’re invisible. Some users have found it takes time to learn to talk with them.
1. Ask Your Orthodontist About Discount Options
You’re not the first patient to walk into an orthodontist’s office who doesn’t have expensive braces in their budget.
Before settling on a dental professional, shop around and see if you can get a better price in a different office. Some orthodontists may give discounts if you have other family members who have used their services before. Or you may get a better price for being a veteran, police officer, or firefighter.
Your professional may also offer discounts if you’re able to pay for the entire cost of your treatment upfront. If this isn’t an option for you, ask about payment plans that allow you to pay off your treatment a little each month. This may be much easier to bake into your budget than one large payment.
Some outfits might also give you 0% interest if you finance your payments with their office. You may find that making braces affordable is easier than you think.
2. Check With Your Insurance
Many health insurance companies won’t cover orthodontic treatments because they’re considered cosmetic.
If you have dental insurance, however, may cover at least a portion of the cost. It’s common for them to pay for some of the downpayment and use the rest of the benefit throughout the duration of the treatment.
Check with your benefits representative or HR department about your options when it comes to how to get braces for cheap.
If you don’t have dental insurance, you can ask your benefits department if that option is available, or shop around for a company with a good monthly rate that will cover cosmetic dentistry.
3. FSA or HSA
If you’re thinking about getting braces in the future, it pays to ask your HR department about a Health Savings Account (HSA.) Generally, these are available as part of your comprehensive health insurance plan.
An HSA allows you to put aside a predetermined amount of money each month from your paycheck. It will be tax-sheltered, so you’ll actually increase your take-home pay.
The money in your HSA can be used to pay for healthcare needs that aren’t covered by insurance. This could include co-pays, dental care, and vision needs.
If your employer doesn’t have an HSA available, ask about a Flexible Savings Account (FSA.) This is similar to an HSA in that you can put tax-sheltered money aside from your paycheck each month. It can get used for medical and dental expenses.
The main difference between an HSA and an FSA is that your employer owns the FSA, while you own an HSA. The HSA also has greater flexibility. If you don’t use your tax-sheltered funds one year, they can get rolled over into the next.
The Benefits of Braces
Getting braces as an adult seems like a bit investment of time and money. You’ll want to consider, however, the long term benefits that make them worth it.
Most people think of braces as a cosmetic investment. They’ll have a nicer looking smile after the treatment is over.
What many don’t realize is that your oral health will benefit as well. Straighter teeth with fewer gaps will make it easier for you to brush and floss. This can help to reduce your number of cavities and lower your chances of developing gum disease.
Braces can also help to get rid of speech impediments and reduce grinding and chipping. Moreover, your straighter, brighter smile can give you the confidence you need to begin developing a healthier lifestyle.
Affordable Braces for Adults
Paying for braces as an adult doesn’t need to be a financial setback. There are ways to find affordable braces for adults that will get your teeth straight without breaking the bank. Once your treatment is over, you’ll be forever grateful that you made the investment in your smile.
Don’t stop getting healthy now. For more information on adult braces, contact us today.