What Is the Average Cost of Braces?

Perfect teeth
Perfect teeth

For those who are not born with straight pearly whites, achieving that perfect smile comes with a price. Before you make the financial commitment to braces, consider all your options in cosmetic dentistry.

Metal braces

Metal braces are the traditional orthodontic treatment. Every patient is different and may have various dental needs in addition to a need for tooth straightening, such as bridge and crown work or jaw discrepancies. According to costhelper.com, the national average cost for metal braces runs about $5,400 and can go as high as $7,600, but this varies depending on your city and type of treatment needed. Bracesinfo.com offers a dental cost calculator for more exact calculations.

Extras to metal braces

If you do not want a mouth full of metal whenever you smile, there are alternatives to consider. Costhelper.com has configured the additional costs of extra options in treatment. For an additional $500, you can have the brackets match the color of your teeth.

It is also possible to have the braces placed on the back of the teeth, which will bring the cost of braces up an extra $2,000 to $5,000, depending on the configuration of your teeth when treatment begins.


Invisalign is a clear alignment system that fits over your mouth. You change the appliances around every two weeks and remove them when brushing and eating. Each aligner must be individually manufactuered to the shape of your bite and with the exact calculations of your teeth. All are custom made.

According to Invisalign's company pricing guide, the national average cost as of August 2009 is around $5,000, but can be found as low as $3,500, again, depending on the patient and various factors.

Not everyone is a candidate for Invisalign, so discuss this option with your orthodontist to see if this is even a viable option for you. Those in need of advanced dental treatment will most likely not be able to use this system.

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