Decisions: Choosing an Orthodontist

I have a huge dilemma….

I want to get braces to straighten my teeth and align my bite. I went to two consultations. Here is the feedback:

  1. Orthodontist A: He has almost two decades of experience. Seemed very knowledgeable during consultation, put me at ease immediately, and I felt really comfortable with him. He told me invasalign was not a good option, and he recommended traditional braces. His treatment plan is a total cost of $5516. Insurance covers $2000. My out of pocket cost will be $3516 over a two year period. This covers treatment, retainers, and a 2 year follow-up.
  2. Orthodontist B: He was really nice and they took x-rays and pictures during my first consultation. He went into detail as to how he would align my teeth, and explained any questions I had. He, also, said I was a candidate for invasalign. Although, I was comfortable, I didn’t feel as ease as with the other doctor. His treatment plan costs $5100. Insurance covers $2000, and due to an insurance association, I get an additional discount of $500. My out of pocket cost will be about $2200 over a two year period. this covers treatment, retainers, and a 1 year follow up.

The difference is $1500! Crazy, I didn’t think there would be such a price difference in braces.

Orthodontist B is an in network provider but they do a lot of marketing on TV. Seriously, I see at least one commercial a day. I don’t really want to go with an orthodontist that does flashy marketing.

Sigh…I’m leaning towards Ortho A, but I don’t know if the $1500 is worth it. My hubby says it’s my teeth and I should go with who I’m comfortable regardless of price.

Does anybody have any advice or questions I can ask so I can make a decision?

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12 responses to “Decisions: Choosing an Orthodontist

  1. I got my braces from a DENTIST which is considered somewhat risky business but he did a really great job. It cost $6,000 which seems similar to what you’re paying. I think you should go with your gut even if it is $1,500 more. This is a permanent investment, you need to trust who’s doing it!

      • just my regular dentist is awesome and he had lots of extra educational training in orthodontics (he had certificates all over the place in his office). He had a bunch of before & afters of other patients too. I’d been seeing him for a few years and trusted him and I’m really happy I went ahead with it. He originally quoted me 18 months of braces but I only had to wear them for 10. My teeth are beautiful and my bite improved so my jaw doesn’t lock anymore. It really was the best purchase I ever made!

  2. wow i had no clue braces had gone up by so much! My parents paid $2,000 about 15 years ago when i got them…. how about getting a third opinion? and have you searched on yelp for any recommendations in your area? That’s how I find my eye doctor who performed lasik on me and i couldn’t have been happier with his services!!

  3. I would go with A. If you find a teeth doc you’re comfortable with, it makes it a little less stressful. After using groupon to get my teeth cleaned, I’d rather pay the extra money for my own dentist just because they are so much nicer.

  4. I’m a dental hygienist who works for a general dentist who also does ortho. The difference in ortho from general dentistry to specialists (and among specialists) is ridiculous. I don’t know what it’s like where you are but in Canada dentists have a fee guide to act as a guideline for pricing and charging, specialists pay little to no attention to fee guides and generally charge whatever they want. In my professional opinion- as much as it sucks and as tempting as invisalign is, go with traditional braces. They’re easier to manipulate and in general, just work better than a computerized model (invisalign). The results are generally better. In terms of choosing a dentist, you have to be comfortable, you see this person at least once a month for a number of months. For the record, I don’t like healthcare providers that advertise. Their patient moral and reputation should speak for themselves….

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