If you are ready to invest in an upgraded smile, “How much is Invisalign?” is one of the first questions you are likely to ask your dentist. Even though you’ll need to pay out-of-pocket for the Invisalign system, many patients agree it’s worth the cost because of the long-term benefits you can achieve. Can you put a price tag on an attractive, confident smile?
It doesn’t matter if you want to start Invisalign as soon as possible or if you are preparing for the treatment in the next few months or years: asking questions right now will ensure you are ready when it’s time to get started. You should talk to your dentist about pricing and find out about the treatment process, timeframe, and other factors that will affect your experience.
Is Invisalign Cheaper Than Braces?
How much does an Invisalign cost compared to braces? Not only do you need to ask how much are Invisalign, but you also need to consider this price tag compared to alternative treatments, such as traditional braces. Every smile is unique, so the final price tag will depend on the treatments required for your mouth. But overall, Invisalign is often a bit cheaper compared to wire braces.
For example, a general price range for Invisalign is between $2,500 to $8,000, with most patients paying around $5,000 for the full treatment. In comparison, traditional braces are usually between $4,000 – $10,000.
The costs of Invisalign vary on a case-by-case basis, often depending on the number of aligner sets you will be wearing. For example, if you only need 5 – 7 aligner sets because only mild misalignments need to be corrected, it could be $2,000 or cheaper.
On the other hand, more severe tooth alignment issues might require 20 aligner sets or even more, ranging from $5,000 to $8,000.
Does Insurance Pay for Invisalign?
How much does an Invisalign cost out-of-pocket vs. with insurance coverage? It depends on the type of insurance you have and whether it includes orthodontic coverage.
In many situations, dental insurance plans will cover Invisalign treatment in the same way they cover the cost of traditional braces. You’ll need to look at the specific coverage for your plan. For example, some plans pay for a specific percentage of the treatment while other plans only offer a specific dollar amount. It’s common for insurance companies to have a lifetime cap on the total amount they will pay for orthodontics.
It’s a good idea to check your insurance coverage before beginning Invisalign or any other major dental treatments. You can estimate your out-of-pocket costs in the beginning and look for ways to maximize available insurance coverage. This strategy ensures that you don’t have any surprise bills at the end of the treatment.
Invisalign vs. Traditional Braces
Keep in mind that Invisalign is the most effective solution for mild or moderate misalignments. If you have severe issues that need to be corrected, traditional braces might be your only option.
Often, dentists and orthodontists will recommend Invisalign if it is a viable treatment for correcting dental misalignments. In the situation where Invisalign won’t be sufficient, then it might be recommended that you choose traditional braces instead. Ask your dentist or orthodontist for more information so you can have a clear understanding of why this treatment plan is being suggested.
Which Is Faster: Braces or Invisalign?
Overall, Invisalign tends to be much faster compared to traditional braces. How many months does Invisalign take? The treatment timeline for Invisalign is usually between 6 – 18 months. In comparison, braces with wires and brackets usually require 20 – 24 months.
The timing of your treatment depends on how much work needs to be done within your mouth. Regardless of the treatment you choose (Invisalign vs. traditional braces), the treatment will take longer if you have more crooked teeth and major alignment issues. Small adjustments can be completed in just a few months, while more movement takes time to gently reposition the teeth in the right location.
Also, keep in mind the number of hours a day you will need to wear the aligner trays or braces. Traditional wire braces use brackets that are cemented to your teeth, so you will wear these braces 24/7.
On the other hand, Invisalign aligners can be removed as desired. However, it’s recommended that you wear the aligners for at least 22 hours a day. Wearing Invisalign aligners for less than 20 hours daily will slow your progress and extend your treatment time.
Is Invisalign Painful?
No matter the method you are using to straighten your teeth, expect that there will be some discomfort and even a bit of pain. Keep in mind that your teeth are being moved, so it’s normal to feel pain because pressure is being placed on the teeth. The first week of treatment tends to be the most uncomfortable as your teeth and mouth adjust to the new aligners.
Most patients notice that they feel the most pain when traditional braces are tightened or they change to a new set of Invisalign aligners. Once you start using a new set of aligners, the pressure will be stronger on your teeth. You might feel pain for about 48 hours, and then the teeth acclimate to the new positioning.
Since you change aligners every few weeks, expect to have a day or two of discomfort before feeling normal again. Some patients prefer to eat softer foods during this time, or they take over-the-counter pain-relieving medications to alleviate the discomfort. Invisalign pain might include:
- Aching in several teeth
- Discomfort in only one tooth
- Aching in the jaw joint
- Tired or aching muscles in the face or neck
- Pain in the tongue
The good news is that Invisalign pain is mild. In fact, some patients don’t describe it as painful – they explain that it’s uncomfortable. You might notice that your teeth are aching a bit. Also, the aligners feel tight in the beginning because they are putting pressure on the teeth to move.
If you feel Invisalign pain, it’s like having a bruise under the tooth. The discomfort will disappear within a few days as the sensitivity and inflammation decrease. Even if your teeth are sore, continue wearing your Invisalign aligners for at least 22+ hours a day. The faster your teeth settle into the new position, the faster your discomfort will subside.
What Is the Biggest Complaint with Invisalign?
As you ask “How much is an Invisalign?” it’s also smart to learn about the other pros and cons of this cosmetic treatment. The more information you know about Invisalign, the better prepared you are for the treatment.
Most patients are happy with the treatment and outcomes. But here are a few common problems that can occur with Invisalign, as well as solutions to solve these issues:
- Lack of Commitment: If you aren’t committed to the treatment, your timeline will be delayed. Not only do you need to invest money in Invisalign, but you also need to be ready to invest your time. To see optimum results, you should wear your aligners for at least 22+ hours daily. If you wear your aligners less, then your teeth can slip back into the old position.
- Lost Aligners: This mistake can happen easily: a patient takes their aligners to eat, tucks them into a napkin, and then accidentally throws them in the garbage with the rest of the waste on the tray. Don’t worry; if you accidentally lose your aligners or break them, you can contact your dentist for a quick replacement.
- Aligner Discoloration: Even though the aligners are designed to be clear and invisible, a change in their coloring can affect the appearance of your smile. If you eat, smoke, or drink with the aligners in your mouth, then staining can build up on the trays. Stop smoking, take out your aligners while eating, and be proactive about good dental hygiene as well as cleaning the aligners.
- Speech and Mouth Movement: There is an adjustment period when you start wearing Invisalign. Some patients develop a slight lisp in the beginning because their mouth movements are changed while they are talking. The good news is that these changes are temporary. Your mouth will adjust to the aligners, and you will get used to the feeling of wearing them throughout the day.
Schedule Your Invisalign Consultation
When you book an appointment with our team to learn more about Invisalign, bring your list of questions, including how much is Invisalign, how long is the treatment, and what should I expect? We are happy to take the time to explain this process so you are prepared for the upcoming treatment plan.
You are invited to learn more about our Invisalign services. Our team at myDental is just a phone call away and happy to schedule a consultation to discuss your cosmetic dental goals. We provide family-friendly dental services for people of all ages. Choose one of our convenient locations where you would like to book an appointment.