Braces Cost: Braces Fee Survey Analysis Results

cost of braces fee analysisThe Wealthy Dentist conducted a braces survey asking doctors how much they charge for braces.

We found that general dentists charge an average of $4350 for orthodontia work, while orthodontists charge $5141.

Some orthodontists felt that braces should cost more.

“The average price should be $7500-8500 based on inflation. Unfortunately, managed care practices and #$&!@!! general dentists are screwing up pricing. In turn, this ‘trickle down effect’ will only hurt dentists who should be getting $1800 for a crown!” expressed a Colorado orthodontist.

Location is factor that can influence the cost of braces. California is known for being one of the most expensive states for dental treatments in general, and braces are no different.

Suburban dentists’ braces fees have increased to match their urban counterparts, which is a change in the last two years.

Here a few comments from doctors:

“We do Invisalign at a lower cost but only if it is minor movement with treatment taking only a couple of months.” (Pennsylvania dentist)

“My cases are treated with better and more individualized diagnosis, and finish with better facial aesthetics, better occlusion, a better smile line and better function.” (Illinois orthodontist)

“The cost of braces depends on the type and length of treatment.” (New Jersey orthodontist)

“Well-trained GP’s are fully capable of providing orthodontic services!” (Ohio dentist)

“We only do Invisalign.” (General dentist)

The Journal of Clinical Orthodontics conducted an orthodontic practice study in 2007 on the average cost of braces in the United States. The study found that for comprehensive treatment of orthodontics the costs averaged $5,354 for adults and $4,914 for children.

Has the cost of braces remained flat or increased in your area over the last four years?

For more on this survey see: Braces Cost an Average of $4,350 at General Dentist

Most Dentists Are Happy to Offer Invisalign (video)

A Wealthy Dentist survey asked dentists if they offer Invisalign to their orthodontic patients.

Three out of four dentists report that their dental practices offer Invisalign services to patients looking to straighten their teeth in an invisible way.

Read more: Invisalign: 3 of 4 Dentists Go with the Money

General Dentists Offer a Variety of Orthodontic Options to Patients

orthodonic options Recently the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) reported that over one million adults are wearing braces. New technologies have widened the options for braces and made them attractive to dental patients of all ages.

No longer do patients fear having a “mouth full of metal.”

We conducted a survey that asked dentists what type of orthodontic options they now offer at their practice.

This was their response –

  • Conventional braces — 22%
  • Ceramic braces — 19%
  • Lingual braces — 6%
  • Invisalign® — 22%
  • Inspice ICE® — 4%
  • ClearCorrect® — 10%
  • Simpli 5® — 6%
  • Smart Moves® — 4%
  • RW II® — 3%
  • Red White & Blue® — 4%

“I have done orthodontics as a GP for 24 years.” (General dentist)

“Patients value the option of avoiding bands and brackets.” (Urban dentist)

“I prefer fixed orthodontia, as it is easier to keep the patient compliant.” (North Carolina dentist)

“Pre-treating arch discrepancies including posterior cross bites with removable orthopedic appliances allow you to finalize many cases with Invisalign®.” (California dentist)

Orthodontic Braces: Taxpayers Spent $424 Million for Children in Texas

Orthodontic Braces: Taxpayers Spent $424 Million for Children in TexasIn June of this year, The Wealthy Dentist published a story about Taxpayers footing the bill for orthodontic braces in Texas.

In Texas, Medicaid pays dentists for orthodontics per procedure, instead of a lump sum for the “finished mouth” of straight teeth.

This has made Medicaid orthodontia a lucrative dental business in Texas.

WFAA-TV of Texas has been investigating this story for the last six months and has uncovered hundreds of millions of dollars of questionable Medicaid spending on dental braces for children in Texas. Their news reports prompted federal investigators to now audit the Texas Health and Human Services Commission, which controls the Medicaid funds.

According to the WFAA website –

In a letter to the state, the Inspector General says it will examine the “authorization process for orthodontic treatment” under Texas Medicaid. “The objective of our audit,” the letter continues, “is to review the State’s controls to ensure that only medically necessary orthodontic cases are paid.” The time period covered by the audit is September 1, 2008 through May 28, 2011.

The new station’s investigation revealed that during that period, Texas taxpayers spent $424 million on orthodontic braces for children under Medicaid. Taxpayers spent $100 million in 2008, $140 million in 2009, and $184 million in 2010, state records show.

Texas dentist, Dr. Christine Ellis, who teaches at UT Southwestern Medical Center, has twice traveled to Washington in an attempt to convince lawmakers to scale back Texas Medicaid orthodontics payments and divert funds for more pressing dental needs.

Her attempts fell on deaf ears. According to the WFAA-TV article, Ellis said, “There’s no response. No one is putting the brakes on this thing.”

Billy Millwee of the Texas Health and Human Services Commission is now telling WFAA-TV that if taxpayers money has been lost, the Attorney General might take action to get it back. He went on to say that Texas will have a new managed care Medicaid dental program beginning next spring.

For more on this story see: Feds Investigate Texas Dental Medicaid Program and Taxpayers Footing the Bill for Braces in Texas.

Invisalign Cost (Survey Video)

Dental safety and BPAInvisalign lets adults get straight teeth without traditional braces.

Unfortunately, the costs keep Invisalign from many patients who might otherwise consider adult ortho.

In a dentist survey we conducted, we found the average cost of Invisalign treatment from a general dentist was about $4,800.

Specialists were a little more expensive at around $5,400.

Treatment from an orthodontist averaged about $6,900.

Jim Du Molin and Julie Frey discuss what dentists think about Invisalign braces:

“Costs are too high for this to be a mainstream treatment for people willing to have adult orthodontics,” said a Michigan Dentist.

“The lab fees are excessive, and Invisalign could use some competition,” said a New York Dentist.

While there’s a lot more interest in adult braces than there used to be, it’s still not quite mainstream.

And with lab costs like that, it’s hard to imagine it truly going mainstream.

What are your thoughts about Invisalign braces?

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