When you’re thinking about straightening your smile, Invisalign is a tempting option. Instead of a mouth full of brackets, you might be able to get the smile you want with discrete, removable aligners that don’t irritate your cheeks and lips.
Invisalign costs a little more than traditional metal brackets. Most people want to know 2 things: how much does Invisalign cost, and is it worth the extra money?
Those are hard questions to answer in a blog post since both answers are very subjective, but we can go over some of the details to help you make an educated judgement.
How Much Does Invisalign Cost?
Perhaps cost isn’t the best starting point, since not everyone is an Invisalign candidate.
Invisalign can correct crowding, crooked teeth, and many bite issues, though it’s not ideal for certain malocclusions such as rotated incisors or teeth that need to be pulled down or up to correct alignment. Some orthodontists might recommend a combination of traditional brackets and clear aligners, and in other cases, Invisalign might not be a good fit at all.
At your consultation (which should be free) your orthodontist will talk about the different options available for your treatment needs and explain the pros and cons of each. Ask as many questions as you need to feel comfortable with the process.
If Invisalign is a good option for you, treatment costs will likely be somewhere in the range of $3,000 to $8,000 for the entire course of treatment, which will last somewhere in the range of 6 months to 2 years. Your insurance may cover a portion of treatment costs, and your orthodontist probably has a monthly payment plan to make treatment as affordable as possible. Monthly payments might be as low as $50, though a range of $100 to $200 per month is average.
The cost of Invisalign might be $500 to $1,000 more than traditional braces. Orthodontist pricing may vary a little, and some even charge the same rate for ceramic brackets or Invisalign. Over the course of your treatment, the cost of Invisalign is just a little bit higher than traditional brackets.
Is Invisalign Worth It?
Parents thinking about Invisalign for their teens and adults looking at treatment options for themselves should decide whether the benefits of clear aligners outweigh the slightly higher cost.
Invisalign is more comfortable than braces, since there are no sharp wires or brackets to scrape against the inside of your mouth. Though there will still be some minor discomfort as your teeth move, the smooth plastic trays are especially nice for people who are concerned about the callouses and abrasions metal brackets cause.
For adults and teens who hate the idea of cleaning around wires and brackets, Invisalign is a better option. Trays are removable and cleaning your teeth and aligners is far easier. Eating is also easier with transparent aligners than it is with regular braces, and your diet is less restricted.
For adults and teens who struggle with accountability, though, brackets are probably a better option. Since clear aligners can be removed, some people may be tempted to leave them off more often than they should, and that can extend treatment time.
Those that play rough, full-contact sports like football or rugby should seriously consider Invisalign, as the risk of injury and damage are lower with the aligner trays than with brackets. Again, not all patients are good candidates for clear aligners, though, so ask your orthodontist for their recommendations.