When you get braces, the dentist will typically discuss the costs involved with the procedure. However, some costs may be overlooked or it may not occur to either you or the dentist that you should include certain things in your budget for braces. Here are two costs you should also set aside funds to pay for after you get your braces removed.
Dental Support Appliances
It can take up to 36 months to straighten teeth, depending on the severity of the misalignment, and there is no guarantee your teeth will maintain their position in your mouth. There are a number of issues that can cause teeth to drift out of alignment, such as periodontal disease and certain oral habits (e.g. bruxism), and you may require dental support appliances to help keep your teeth position.
For instance, it's not unusual for people to have to wear oral retainers for a period of time after getting their braces removed. If you suffer from nighttime jaw clenching or tooth grinding, your dentist may recommend you purchase a mouth guard to minimize the damage that issue can cause.
Discuss any follow-up treatments you may require after your braces are removed and add the cost of them to your budget.
Teeth Cleaning and Whitening
Another thing you should budget for is teeth cleaning and whitening. Although you may brush and floss regularly to remove food particles and plaque, it's inevitable some may be left behind. Additionally, the enamel surrounding the brackets may become stained from the foods and drinks you consume during the years you wore your braces, which may result in unsightly bright spots on your teeth where the brackets were placed.
As a result, you may require a bit of additional dental work to get your teeth in tiptop shape. A professional teeth cleaning will remove any built-up plaque, tartar, and food debris you weren't able to reach when you had your braces on, while a teeth whitening treatment will remove stains and make your teeth more uniform in color. This ensures you will begin your new life without braces with a healthy and bright smile.
Some dentists may include these treatments as part of the orthodontic procedure, while others may bill them separately. Discuss the issue with your dentist and make room in your budget accordingly.
For more information about getting braces or costs you should be prepared to pay, contact an orthodontist with an office like Montano & Cardall Orthodontic Specialists.