While most people want their children to have a beautiful smile, it is not uncommon for parents to cringe when they learn that their child will need braces. When it comes to correcting teeth alignment and bite issues braces are very effective, but they can also be quite expensive. Luckily, there are several ways to make braces more affordable so your child can get straight teeth without breaking your bank account. Use the following tips to make the cost of your child's braces work with your household budget:
Don't Rule Out Dental Insurance
Most dental insurance plans do not cover the full cost of braces. But there are many dental insurance plans that cover a portion of the cost. Take the time to call your dental insurance company and learn more about your policy and orthodontic treatment coverage. You may be happily surprised to learn that your insurance company may cover several hundred dollars of the cost of your child's braces.
Seek Orthodontic Treatment Early
Braces are common in young adolescents, but starting some treatments in elementary school when your child's permanent teeth are growing in can reduce the amount of time that your child needs to wear braces, which can lower to overall cost. If your child's dentist mentions that braces may be needed in the future, it is a good idea to make an appointment for your child to see an orthodontist even if he or she is still pretty young-- using spacers or palate expanders may help while teeth are growing in and prevent further problems as your child gets older.
Consider a Payment Plan
It is no secret that braces can be expensive, and most orthodontists realize that many families cannot comfortably pay for treatment upfront, especially when more than one child in the family needs braces. Many orthodontists offer payment plans, which allows you to make monthly payments over the entire course of time that your child wears braces. Many kids need to wear braces for a few years, so you will be able to break up the total treatment cost into many smaller payments.
Check Out Local Dental Schools
If you live in an area with a dental school, you may be able to save a lot of money by taking your child there for orthodontic treatment. At a dental school treatments are performed by students who are about to graduate from their program, and each treatment is supervised by either a dentist or orthodontist. In most cases, the overall cost of braces from a dental school is the fraction of the cost of going to a regular orthodontist. You can click here for more information on braces.