Do you have a few children that need orthodontic treatment? Treating one kid can be expensive, so if you know more than one of your kids needs braces, you're probably looking for ways to pinch pennies. Here are some ideas that can help you find affordable orthodontics:
Start Interceptive Orthodontics
In the past, children did not begin orthodontic treatment until they were about 12 years old. Interceptive orthodontics means that your child will start orthodontic treatment as soon as any malocclusions are detected. This is a great option because it can potentially reduce more expensive treatment costs down the road, since the process focuses on making corrections as the child grows instead of making extractions and forcing difficult structural changes.
Visit a Dental School
While you may have visited a dental school for your six-month checkup, did you know that some dental schools actually provide orthodontic treatments at a discounted rate? And the students are continually overseen by an experienced dentist, so your child will still be getting quality care.
Go with Metal Braces and Brackets
Nicer materials like clear ceramic brackets may be more aesthetically pleasing, but they typically cost more. The best way to save on your child's orthodontic treatment is to get standard metal braces and brackets. Instead of paying $4,000 to $8,000, you may only pay $3,000 to $7,000. And if you start sooner rather than later, your child could partially be covered by insurance.
Remind Your Children to Wear Their Rubber Bands
Rubber bands, or elastics, play an important part in some treatments to fully correct the bite. While the braces' wires exert force to move the teeth, sometimes they need a little extra help to make a significant change. If one of your children has been instructed to wear rubber bands, he or she should change them every day so that the pressure is consistent. If your child slacks on wearing the bands, the effectiveness of their treatment could come to a halt. Make sure they are wearing their bands so you aren't paying for a longer treatment than you have to.
Weigh the Pros and Cons of Different Retainers
After your children finish their treatment, they'll probably be fitted with a retainer so that their teeth don't shift. While most removable retainers are fairly similar in their price range, there are some other pros and cons to consider. A vacuum-formed retainer may be a little more effective than a Hawley retainer (made of acrylic and wire) at holding some corrections. However, vacuum-formed retainers are also prone to breaking and warping; therefore, you may actually have to pay more for replacements. If one of your children isn't very good at taking care of their things, it may be better to get a Hawley to save some money.
Ultimately, it's best to talk with your dentist for the most affordable orthodontic treatments. He or she can create the best plan for you and your children. Contact a company like Reed Orthodontics to get started.