How Much Should You Plan on Spending for your Child’s Braces? And How Long Will Your Child Need Them?

Some people are just born with a perfect smile. That’s great, but chances are most people are not entirely pleased with the teeth they were given. Fortunately, through the miracle of orthodontics, anyone can have access to an award-winning smile.

If you have a child who could benefit from orthodontics, you probably know that there is a cost involved with getting braces. It could be quite a lot, so you should check around and get quotes and recommendations before you choose a provider.

You should also look into different options, because the traditional metal braces may not be what your child needs. Here are a few options and their associated costs:

Metal braces

The national average cost for metal braces is as low as $5,400 or as high as $6,700. The cost will vary according to where you live, so check a site like to get an estimate for your area. If you don’t want braces showing on your teeth, you can ask for braces that are the color of your teeth, called ceramic braces. Expect to add $500 to the cost of metal braces. You can also have the braces applied to the backs of your teeth (lingual braces), but that will cost $2,000 to $5,000 more than metal braces.


Invisalign is a clear alignment system that you wear over your teeth, like teeth whitening trays, and you get a new one about every two weeks. It is removed while eating and brushing teeth. Each set you wear is made especially for you according to the specifications of your teeth and bite. On average, Invisalign will cost between $5,000 and $8,000 depending on where you live. Invisalign isn’t right for every patient, so be sure to consult an orthodontist to know if it is right for your child.

Looking at the average cost of braces, you have a few options for paying for them. If you have dental insurance, you may be able to have about 50% of the cost covered. Your health insurance may also cover the cost if your child needs braces for medical reasons. Many dentists also offer payment plans, where you pay monthly throughout the course of treatment. You can also save up in advance if you know your child will need braces.

So now that you know how much braces cost, how long will your child need to wear them? The answer will vary for every person, as the length of time the braces are worn depends on individual circumstances. How malaligned are your child’s teeth? Does he or she need bite correction? Studies have shown that the earlier a person starts wearing braces, the less time it will take to correct their teeth. A good rule of thumb when estimating how long your child will need braces is two years. He or she will likely need a retainer for some years after to maintain the placement of teeth