Alternatives to orthodontic insurance

Compare orthodontic insurance to DentalSave

Get big discounts from the best orthodontists on braces, Invisalign, and more.

If you’re shopping for orthodontic insurance—or even if you already have insurance, but expect to need expensive orthodontic treatment—you owe yourself a close look at DentalSave and the potential savings that come with membership.

Read on to learn how a DentalSave discount plan works, how it compares with traditional orthodontic insurance, and how it can cut your costs.

How Orthodontic Insurance Works

First, some quick definitions: Orthodontics is a specialized field of dentistry that deals with position and alignment of the teeth and jaws. Orthodontists are dental specialists who completed 2-3 years of advanced training in the field following dental school.

We commonly associate orthodontics with braces—metal, ceramic, or plastic devices like Invisalign that gradually move the teeth and make for a better smile and bite. (Learn more about braces here.)

Up to a third of people can benefit from orthodontic treatment. But orthodontics can be expensive, and costs keep some of us from getting the care we need. Even worse, costs can keep parents from getting braces for their kids.

Orthodontics defined

Traditional dental insurance plans might cover orthodontic treatment, but it’s important to read the fine print.

Many dental plans don’t offer orthodontic coverage at all (though some companies offer supplemental orthodontic insurance). Many others only cover orthodontic treatment for children, or limit you to particular kinds of braces.

But there’s another problem with traditional orthodontic insurance coverage—plans typically limit the benefits they’ll pay in any given year, often capping payments at just $1,000-2,000, or setting a specific limit for orthodontic care. You’re responsible for anything over that amount (on top of your insurance premium and any co-pays).

If traditional dental or orthodontic insurance doesn’t meet your needs, you’ve got another option—a dental discount plan.

DentalSave is different

DentalSave operates on a different model. Instead of paying a premium, you purchase a membership fee that entitles you to 25 percent discounts on any care you receive from participating dentists.

You pay discounted rates directly to the dentist, but there’s no annual cap—you save money on all the care you need. That’s especially important with expensive treatments like orthodontics.

DentalSave memberships start at $99 a year for an individual, or $199 for a family or three or more. Compare these sample scenarios to see costs for orthodontic care with DentalSave versus traditional insurance:

Single adult patient

Insurance DentalSave
Annual premiums/membership $400 $99
Pre-orthodontic examination $356 $196
Comprehensive adult orthodontic treatment $4,348 (after $1,000 benefit cap) $4,011 (with 25 percent discount)
Removal of braces $475 $261.50
Total: $5,579 $4,567.50

Family with adolescent patient

Insurance DentalSave
Annual premiums/membership $800 $199
Pre-orthodontic examination $356 $196
Comprehensive adult orthodontic treatment $4,218 (after $1,000 benefit cap) $3,913.50 (with 25 percent discount)
Removal of braces $475 $261.50
Total: $,5,849 $4,570

On top of these savings, DentalSave members get 25-50 percent discounts on regular exams, cleanings, and any other care they receive in a given year—in many cases, a DentalSave membership pays for itself in just one routine visit to the dentist.

Even better, a DentalSave membership also provides access to big discounts on vision care, hearing care, and prescription medications, all included at no additional charge.

DentalSave dentists—including orthodontists and other specialists—are among the best in the business, practicing in virtually every community. Use our orthodontist search tool to find a participating orthodontist in your area or to see if your current dentist participates.

Some dentists accept both DentalSave and traditional insurance—ask at your dentist’s office to find out. Combining DentalSave with traditional insurance you already have might further cut your costs on braces.

DentalSave or orthodontic insurance?

So, which is right for you? Only you can make the call—do a little research, crunch the numbers, and see which option makes orthodontic care more affordable.

Once you decide on DentalSave, it takes only a minute to become a member and never pay full price at the dentist again. Everyone can join, and the savings start right away—all you do is show your card.