Last month I was invited out to the headquarters of Align Technology, to learn all about Invisalign and Invisalign Teen as part of my training to be an Invisalign Mom Advisory Board member.
I was very impressed with everyone at Align Technologies, from the legal and marketing teams to their CEO, Tom Prescott, who took a minute out of his busy schedule to stop by to welcome the Mom Advisory Board members.
I was even more impressed with Invisalign’s technology, from the plastics they use, to their computer modeling and manufacturing, to their latest improvement. After viewing several case studies and hearing about the benefits and drawbacks of Invisalign for both adults, teens and their parents, I was convinced that Invisalign would be a great fit for my family.
Off to the orthodontist
When I got back from my trip, my 11-year-old son, Nathan, and I had an appointment for a consultation with Goings Orthodontics, a Premier Preferred Invisalign Provider here in Colorado.
Back in June, I wrote that I thought Nathan wasn’t ready for braces yet. However, he had lost what I thought was his last baby tooth. So I was hoping that we’d get the go ahead for him to get the Invisalign Teen treatment. Unfortunately, I was wrong. The full head x-rays that were taken showed he has a few more adult teeth that need to come in.
Nathan was so disappointed, that he cried a little. He had seen how difficult it was for his older friends to have braces – the broken wires, the cut up lips, and the forbidden foods. Both of us knew that Invisalign Teen would be perfect for Nathan. He could still join band and play trumpet. He wouldn’t have to worry about getting hit in the mouth while sparing in karate class either.
I liked the convenience of less office visits that would take away from school and work. Both of us appreciated that he wouldn’t get gunk in his braces either (gross!) while eating since you take the Invisalign aligners out before meals.
I'm so positive about the product that I told Nathan he'd be getting Invisalign treatment eventually. However, he'd have to wait.
So guess who’s going to get Invisalign treatment? Me!
Getting as perfect a smile as possible
As I wrote previously, I’m very self-conscious about my bottom teeth and wanted them straightened. Here’s why:
Now I know they’re actually not that bad - at least according to my husband. But I hate them and they make me self-conscious. So I’m getting them fixed and making sure I have the best smile I can possibly have.
After I went through the x-ray and picture taking process, I met with Kathryn, the treatment specialist. She explained the Invisalign treatment steps and what to expect. And she also gave me a quote - $5795 for 8 to 12 months of treatment. The average cost of treatment is $5,000 so I wasn’t surprised.
Kathryn also told me something I didn’t realize. While you can drink water with the Invisalign aligners in, you’re advised not to drink soda, coffee or tea as that will stain them. I then realized I won’t be able to bite my nails either while wearing Invisalign – probably a good thing.
Dr. Goings then sat down with us and we chatted about next steps and what to expect. First, I’d have impressions (dental molds) taken. Then it would be around six weeks before I’d start treatment. I was excited to get started.
The costs of a beautiful smile
If you’re considering Invisalign treatment, you’ll need to get a consultation to find out your costs and how long you’ll be in treatment. Many Invisalign providers provide free consultations, but not all so ask when making your appointment.
When you’re having your consultation ask the orthodontist if they offer discounts for paying in full in cash up front versus monthly. Some also offer better discounts if you pay by check than if you pay by credit or debit card.
If you have dental insurance, find out if it pays anything for orthodontic services. One of the other Invisalign Mom Advisory Board members said her insurance pays $1,000 for kids and $500 for adults.
Other dental plans pay a percentage up to %50. However, they’ll pay a monthly portion over the time you’re in treatment. So if you’re in treatment for a year and your cost is $5000, with such a dental plan, they’d pay you about $208 per month. So even if you’ve paid your orthodontist in full to get a better price, they’ll still pay you back month by month.
So when calling your dental insurance provider, make sure you ask if they cover Invisalign and how they’ll reimburse you or the orthodontist.
Disclosure: I’m a member of the Invisalign Teen Mom Advisory Board. I’m receiving complimentary treatment from Invisalign, but all opinions and experiences expressed are my own.