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Best Orthodontic Insurance Options of 2024

Julia Willcox

Written by Julia Willcox

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Orthodontic treatment can help countless people increase their confidence and achieve the smile of their dreams. In the past, metal braces were the go-to option for orthodontic treatment, but other options, including invisible braces and clear aligners, are increasing in popularity. The downside to most forms of orthodontic treatment is the high cost- which is where insurance companies can become a major player. But, does dental insurance cover braces? Well, not all orthodontic insurance companies are created equally, and different companies might be best suited for different situations. Below is a synopsis of multiple orthodontic insurance companies and a general overview of what you can expect when looking into orthodontic insurance so you can find the best dental insurance for braces for you.

Let’s look at the pros and cons of the brand to see if it is really the best dental insurance for braces:

Does insurance cover invisible braces?

To the question: ‘Will dental insurance cover invisible braces?’ We can answer that whether or not insurance covers invisible braces is very much dependent on the specific insurance company. And what about braces, does insurance cover braces? Well, this would be the first question to answer before asking, “does insurance cover invisible braces?” If an insurance company, whether it is health insurance or dental insurance, does cover orthodontia, braces should be covered. Always check the insurance plan details to confirm or deny if invisible braces are covered.

What Does an Orthodontic Insurance Cover?​

Orthodontic insurance for adults provides coverage for orthodontic treatment, including imaging -like 3D scans- braces, exams, and post-braces retainers. But before choosing a policy, you’ll need to read your policy carefully. Another thing you may have to worry about are the long waiting periods before you can begin to receive benefits, and even then, depending on your policy, you may have to spend a certain amount out of pocket, your deductible, before the insurance will kick in. In general, however, your plan could cover:

  • Pre-treatment consultation
  • Exams
  • X-rays
  • Tooth extractions that are necessary for orthodontic treatment
  • The orthodontic treatment itself
  • Retainers
  • Post-treatment records

It’s important to distinguish between orthodontic insurance and an HSA or FSA account, although many clear aligner brands will let you pay for the treatment with money from these accounts. An HSA (Health Savings Account) is a savings account where you can set aside money that isn’t taxed to use for certain medical expenses. The money in your HSA can be used to pay for deductibles, copayments, and coinsurance, although they cannot usually be used to pay monthly premiums.

An FSA (Flexible Spending Account) is similar to an HSA. It is a type of account where you can direct untaxed earnings from your job to pay for certain healthcare costs.

It’s essential to keep these two account options in mind as you’re wondering how to pay for your clear aligners. That’s because if you have dental insurance through your employer, it more than likely will not cover orthodontic care, but an HSA or FSA, which you automatically pay into with every paycheck, is an excellent option for many.

Top 7 dental insurance companies for braces

It can be confusing to figure out the ins and outs of any type of insurance, and orthodontic insurance for braces is no different. Different companies have distinct advantages to offer and can benefit patients in different ways. Below are the top 7 dental insurance companies for braces- check these out if you are looking for a way to reduce the cost of your orthodontic treatment.

Looking for dental insurance that covers braces shouldn’t be a hassle, that’s why we have listed the best companies so you can find the best dental orthodontic insurance for you.

Delta Dental

delta dental best orthodontic insurance

Delta Dental is considered the most significant dental insurance company in America and offers insurance plans that cater to various situations. Delta Dental provides plans that are grouped into three main categories: individuals and families, small businesses, and retirees. Within each of these categories, there are additional options. For individuals and families, for example, Delta Dental offers five different insurance plans. Delta Dental also features dental insurance plans in six states specifically: Arkansas, Kansas, Kentucky, South Dakota, Virginia, and Wisconsin.

Does Delta Dental cover braces? Whether or not certain treatments, such as braces, are considered in-network with Delta Dental insurance depends on your location. There is a cost estimator tool on the Delta Dental website within the “Member Tools” tab. With this, those looking for dental treatment, including braces, can select the desired treatment and enter their zip code to learn how much they can expect Delta Dental to cover for that treatment.

Pros
  • Large insurance company- will provide coverage in many locations
  • Offers a variety of insurance plans
Cons
  • May not provide coverage for treatment with Invisalign or other clear aligners

Does Delta Dental cover Invisalign or other brands of invisible braces?

Does Delta Dental cover Invisalign in this case. Since Delta Dental does consider braces an in-network procedure in some locations, Delta Dental Invisalign coverage can fall under this umbrella category. If it does, Invisalign cost can be reduced. However, this depends on the specific insurance plan within Delta Dental, as not all plans provide full (or any) coverage for orthodontic treatment.

DentalPlans

dentalplans best orthodontic insurance

DentalPlans offers some of the best dental discount plans, it has two different options for patients looking to reduce the cost of their orthodontic treatment. The first is a “dental savings plan,” which is different from traditional insurance coverage. Another name for a dental savings plan is a dental discount plan, and these allow patients to receive a 10% to a 60% discount on dental services from providers nationwide.

DentalPlans also offers dental insurance plans. They breakdown the typical coverage for dental insurance as follows: 100% of preventative care (annual checkups, routine cleanings, and x-rays), 80% of “basic” services (fillings, some extractions, and some deep cleanings), and 50% of “major” services (root canals, bridges, crowns, dentures, and orthodontic treatment).

To be clear, DentalPlans is not a stand-alone dental insurance company- its website simply serves as a vehicle for patients to be able to compare and contrast their options with several different dental insurance companies, including Delta Dental, Humana Complete, Renaissance Dental and Aetna (an amazing choice based on the Aetna dental insurance reviews online).

Pros
  • Several different insurance companies included on one website simplifies the process of selecting a plan.
  • The options of dental savings plans in additions to dental insurance plans.
Cons
  • Aside from the dental savings plans offered, DentalPlans does not offer its own standalone insurance plan.

Does DentalPlans insurance cover Invisalign or other brands of invisible braces?

Given that DentalPlans offers insurance from several different companies, and some of the companies do include braces (and therefore potentially invisible braces as well) as part of their coverage, DentalPlans insurance will likely cover at least part of the cost of Invisalign or other brands of invisible braces.

Find the perfect dental plan!
Find the perfect dental plan!
If, after reading numerous reviews, you still don't know which dental plan best suits your needs, check out DentalPlans.com's comparison tool to find the one that's perfect for you!

Cigna

cigna best dental orthodontic insurance

Cigna offers dental insurance plans that start at $19 per person per month. Additionally, you can enroll in a Cigna dental plan without enrolling in a Cigna medical plan as well.

The insurance plans offered by Cigna provide several different levels of coverage, and at least some of these plans do offer coverage of orthodontic treatment. The highest level of coverage is found in the Cigna Dental 1500 plan, which covers up to $1,000 in orthodontia. This is a lifetime limit, and the deductible for this specific plan is $50 per individual and $150 per family. There is also a separate deductible for orthodontic coverage.

Pros
  • Multiple levels of coverage.
  • Orthodontia is covered.
Cons
  • Separate deductible for orthodontic coverage.

Does Cigna cover Invisalign or other brands of invisible braces?

For Cigna, we have answered the questions of “does insurance cover braces”? or “Does Cigna cover invisalign or braces?”. The details of the Cigna 1500 plan state that the coverage of orthodontia includes braces and other forms of treatment, meaning that it is likely that some Cigna dental insurance plans will cover at least a portion of the cost of Invisalign or other brands of invisible braces.

Aflac

aflac best orthodontic insurance

Aflac is a supplemental insurance company, meaning that it can help cover the remaining out-of-pocket cost that your major medical insurance company does not cover. It should not be the only form of medical insurance you select, as it is not meant to cover the total cost or the majority of the cost of treatments and procedures.

One of Aflac’s dental insurance highlights is that the deductible actually decreases over time, meaning that the longer you stay with the company, the less you will have to pay for your insurance. Additionally, there is no waiting period for any service, and Aflac will provide some coverage for orthodontic treatments like braces.

Pros
  • Provides additional insurance coverage on top of what you may already have.
  • Decreasing deductible.
Cons
  • Not a standalone dental insurance company (must be used in conjunction with another plan).
  • Details about coverage and pricing are not fully available online.

Does Aflac cover Invisalign or other brands of invisible braces?

Since Aflac dental insurance does cover orthodontia, it may cover Invisalign or other brands of invisible braces. However, the full details of Aflac’s plan and pricing are not fully available on its website. To find out additional information about what Aflac may or may not cover, you must fill out a form to get a quote on the cost of the treatment or procedure.

Humana

Best Orthodontic Insurance Options of 2024 1

Humana offers dental insurance plans starting at $17 per month via their “Preventative Value” Plan. Humana’s other dental insurance plans include the “Loyalty Plus” plan starting at $26 per month, and the “Complete Dental” Plan, which starts at $44 per month. The “Preventative Value” plan does not require any copays and covers preventative services like routine cleanings and checkups. The “Loyalty Plus” plan offers similar benefits, including an increase in the annual benefit maximum over three years. Finally, the “Complete Dental” plan is a PPO (Preferred Provider Organization) and helps patients save money on both routine and major dental procedures. Does Humana cover braces? Thankfully, the answer to that is yes, depending on the specific type of plan you selected.

Pros
  • A variety of plans for patients to choose from.
  • For the “Loyalty Plus” plan, increasing benefits the longer you have your dental insurance plan with Humana.
Cons
  • Not all plans cover orthodontic treatment.

Invisalign with Humana: Is it covered? What about other brands of invisible braces?

To the question “Does Humana cover Invisalign or braces?”, we can say that several of Humana’s dental insurance plans provide coverage for orthodontic treatment for both children and adults. Some may cover at least part of the cost of Invisalign or other invisible braces. Since some companies might just cover that cost of children’s orthodontic care, Humana providing orthodontic insurance for adults makes it stand out. Whether or not these services will be covered depends on the specific plan that you select within Humana. Additionally, Humana’s website specifies that an insurance plan must be purchased before starting an orthodontic treatment plan. If the treatment begins before a dental insurance plan is purchased, the cost of that treatment might not be covered,

USAA Dental Insurance

usaa orthodontic insurance

As a major insurance provider in multiple major areas, USAA works with two other dental insurance providers, Cigna and IHC, to help people find the best possible coverage for them. USAA offers orthodontic coverage for braces and other forms of orthodontic treatment and reminds potential customers first to check and see if braces are already covered via their health insurance before purchasing additional orthodontic coverage.

To be considered in-network for USAA dental insurance, a provider must be in-network for Cigna DPPO Advantage or IHC. Additionally, there is typically a waiting period for those covered by USAA dental insurance. Although the waiting period can be waived in some circumstances if you have had continuous coverage for a year prior, unfortunately, the waiting period is not waived for orthodontic treatments.

Pros
  • Plans offered via both Cigna and IHC provide a variety of options for patients.
  • Coverage for orthodontic treatment is included within the insurance plans offered.
Cons
  • There is a waiting period for some or all of the insurance benefits to come into effect.

Does USAA dental insurance cover Invisalign or other brands of invisible braces?

Since USAA dental plans do cover braces as part of its dental insurance, Invisalign aligners and other brands of invisible braces are likely covered at least partially, depending on the specific USAA dental plan you select.

Careington

careington orthodontic insurance

Careington offers great dental discount plans, but it is not officially a health or dental insurance company. Its website issues a disclaimer stating that the plans offered by Careington are not insurance and are not intended to replace health insurance.

The discount payment plans offered by Careington are available directly to individuals as well as through employers. These plans work via a membership deal: when patients find a provider who works with Careington, they just need to show the provider their membership card at the time of the service.

Pros
  • Multiple types of discounts and plans offered.
  • Not an insurance plan, so no official deductibles or copays.
Cons
  • Since Careington is not dental insurance, you may wish to look into other options if you are looking for broader dental coverage.

Does Careington cover Invisalign or other brands of invisible braces?

Since Careington offers discounted services in various areas, this would depend on the Careington providers that are available near you and what types of services they offer. Search for orthodontic providers near your location on the Careington website and check the Careington review to find out more.

How to Compare Dental Insurance for Braces

Choosing the best dental insurance for braces can be a daunting task. There are many different factors to consider, from monthly premiums and deductibles to coverage limits and provider networks. Here are some key factors to keep in mind when comparing dental insurances that cover braces:

  • Coverage Limits: Dental insurance plans typically have an annual maximum coverage limit, which is the maximum amount the plan will pay for dental services in a given year. When comparing plans, be sure to check the coverage limit for orthodontic treatment like braces, and ensure that it will cover the full cost of your treatment.
  • Deductibles: Most dental insurance plans have a deductible, which is the amount a patient must pay out of pocket before the insurance coverage kicks in. Be sure to compare deductibles between plans to determine which plan offers the best value for your needs.
  • Co-Payments: Co-payments are the portion of the cost of treatment that patients are responsible for paying out of pocket. When comparing plans, check the co-payment amounts for orthodontic treatment like braces and factor these costs into your overall decision.
  • Waiting Periods: Some dental insurance plans have waiting periods before coverage for orthodontic treatment like braces kicks in. Be sure to compare waiting periods between plans and choose a plan that meets your specific timeline and needs.
  • Provider Networks: Dental insurance plans often have provider networks, which are groups of dentists and orthodontists that accept the insurance plan. Be sure to check the provider network of each plan and ensure that there are orthodontists in your area that accept the plan.
  • Monthly Premiums: Dental insurance plans require monthly premiums, which can vary significantly between plans. When comparing plans, be sure to factor in the monthly premium cost along with other costs like deductibles and co-payments to determine the total cost of the plan.

By considering these factors when comparing dental insurance plans that cover braces, you can choose a plan that best meets your needs and budget. It is important to carefully review plan details and consult with an insurance agent or dental provider to truly choose the best dental insurance for braces based on your needs.

Find the perfect dental plan!
Find the perfect dental plan!
If, after reading numerous reviews, you still don't know which dental plan best suits your needs, check out DentalPlans.com's comparison tool to find the one that's perfect for you!

Comparison Table of Best Dental Insurance for Braces

Even answering “does insurance cover braces” might not tell you whether or not an insurance company covers Invisalign. Invisalign is not always covered by dental insurance, and if it is, it might not be fully covered. Although Invisalign coverage depends on the specific plan you select within a particular insurance company, the chart below provides a quick summary of which companies might provide insurance coverage for Invisalign treatment.

CompanyCovered
Delta DentalWithin some plans
DentalPlansWithin some plans
CignaWithin some plans
AflacSome plans, supplementary insurance
HumanaWithin some plans
USAAPartial coverage offered
CareingtonNot an insurance plan

There are a variety of options available for dental and orthodontic insurance coverage, as well as discount plans that can save you money on treatments and procedures. When considering insurance coverage for orthodontic treatments like braces, you should first investigate whether your regular health insurance might already cover braces or a similar treatment. If so, there is no need to purchase separate dental or orthodontic insurance! If it is not covered, some dental insurance companies will cover orthodontic treatment. Some will even cover alternative treatment aside from traditional metal braces, such as Invisalign or other forms of clear aligners.

Overall Dental Insurance Company Evaluation Table

Delta DentalBest Total Value
AetnaLowest Starting Price
HumanaLong-Term Value
CignaBest Orthodontic Coverage

Dental Discount Plans vs Dental Insurance for Braces

When it comes to paying for orthodontic treatment like braces, patients often consider dental discount plans and dental insurance as potential options. While both plans can help reduce the out-of-pocket cost of orthodontic treatment, there are some key differences to consider.

Dental discount plans are membership programs that offer discounted rates on dental services, including orthodontic treatment. Members pay an annual or monthly fee to access discounted rates at participating dental providers. These plans do not provide coverage in the traditional sense, but rather a reduced fee for services.

Dental insurance, on the other hand, is a policy that provides coverage for a portion of the cost of dental services, including orthodontic treatment. Patients typically pay a monthly premium and receive coverage for a set percentage of the cost of services, up to a predetermined annual limit.

When it comes to braces, dental discount plans may offer greater flexibility in terms of provider choice, as patients can typically visit any participating provider in the plan’s network. Dental insurance plans, however, may have restrictions on which providers are covered and may require pre-authorization for orthodontic treatment.

In terms of cost, a dental plan that covers braces may have lower monthly fees than dental insurance plans, but patients will still need to pay the discounted rate for orthodontic treatment out of pocket. Dental insurance that covers braces may have higher monthly premiums, but they can provide coverage for a portion of the cost of orthodontic treatment, reducing the out-of-pocket expense for patients.

Ultimately, the decision to choose a dental discount plan or dental insurance for braces will depend on an individual’s specific needs and budget. Patients should carefully compare the costs and benefits of each option and consult with their orthodontist or dental provider to determine which plan is best for them.

Cost of Braces Without Dental Insurance

If you’re considering getting braces to straighten your teeth, the cost can be a significant factor to consider. Without dental insurance, the cost of braces can vary depending on several factors, including the type of braces, the duration of treatment, and the location of the dental office. To help you get an idea of the average cost of braces without insurance, we’ve compiled a table with estimated costs for different types of braces and treatment durations. Please keep in mind that these are only estimates, and your actual cost may vary depending on your specific circumstances.

TYPE OF BRACESAVERAGE COST
Metal braces$3,000 - $7,000
Ceramic braces$4,000 - $8,000
Lingual braces$8,000 - $10,000
Invisalign$3,000 - $8,000$3,000 - $8,000

FAQ

What is orthodontia coverage?

Orthodontia coverage is a type of dental insurance that specifically covers the cost of orthodontic treatment, such as braces, retainers, and other procedures that help straighten and align teeth. This coverage is typically offered as an add-on to regular dental insurance plans and can help offset the often significant costs associated with orthodontic care.

Does insurance cover a lost retainer?

Some forms of dental insurance may cover a lost retainer, but this may also depend on the specific plan within that insurance company. Check with your insurance provider and read the details of your insurance plan to find out if the plan would cover a lost retainer.

Which factors should I take into account to choose the best dental insurance?

Choosing the form of dental insurance best suited to your individual circumstances must take multiple factors into account. First, you should have a budget in mind for how much you would be willing to spend on dental insurance. The starting price of plans varies by company, and there are several different levels of coverage (and therefore price) within each company. Next, you should think about what exactly you want to be covered. Are you planning on getting braces? Invisalign? You want to be sure to select a plan that will cover the treatment that you intend on getting. Other factors include location and the number of people being covered by the insurance policy.

Does Invisalign insurance exist?

Insurance is not available directly through Invisalign itself. However, there are insurance companies that offer orthodontic coverage and may cover at least some of the cost of Invisalign.

Why do some insurance companies not cover Invisalign treatment?

Some insurance companies might not cover Invisalign treatment because there are other, cheaper treatments that accomplish the same thing. For instance, some insurance companies might claim to provide orthodontic coverage but will only cover braces and not Invisalign. For the insurance company, this makes sense because they don’t want to have to pay more than absolutely necessary.

 

Is paying for dental insurance for braces worth it?

Whether paying for dental insurance for braces is worth it depends on the specific insurance plan and the individual's orthodontic needs. Orthodontic treatment, including braces, can be expensive, and many dental insurance plans do offer coverage for orthodontic services. However, the amount of coverage and the out-of-pocket expenses will depend on the plan's specific benefits and limitations. If an individual requires orthodontic treatment, dental insurance that includes orthodontic coverage may be worth it, as it can help offset some of the costs of treatment. It's important to carefully review plan details and compare costs before choosing a dental insurance plan.

What are the expected costs of dental insurance for braces?

The expected costs of dental insurance for braces will depend on the specific plan and the amount of orthodontic coverage provided. Typically, orthodontic coverage is considered an add-on to dental insurance and may require an additional premium or higher premium rates. Additionally, most dental insurance plans that cover braces will have a lifetime maximum benefit for orthodontic treatment, which is the maximum amount the plan will pay over the course of the individual's lifetime. The out-of-pocket costs for braces will depend on the individual's specific treatment plan and the amount of coverage provided by their dental insurance. It's important to review plan details and get a cost estimate from the orthodontist before choosing a dental insurance plan with orthodontic coverage.

Does medical insurance cover braces?

In general, medical insurance does not cover the cost of braces for cosmetic purposes, such as correcting crooked teeth. However, medical insurance may cover orthodontic treatment if it is deemed medically necessary to correct a functional issue such as a misaligned jaw or a bite problem that affects speech or eating. The specific coverage and eligibility requirements of braces health insurance will depend on the individual's medical insurance plan and the medical necessity of the orthodontic treatment. It's important to check with the medical insurance provider to determine coverage for orthodontic treatment.

Why dental insurance is important?

Dental insurance is important because it helps make dental care more affordable and accessible. Many dental procedures can be expensive, and dental insurance can help cover the cost of routine preventive care like cleanings and checkups, as well as more complex procedures like fillings, extractions, and root canals. Having dental insurance can also encourage people to visit the dentist regularly, which can help catch and treat dental issues before they become more serious and costly to treat. Overall, dental insurance can help individuals and families maintain good oral health and avoid significant out-of-pocket expenses.

What is dental insurance waiting period?

A dental insurance waiting period is the amount of time that a policyholder must wait after purchasing a dental insurance plan before they are eligible to receive coverage for certain dental services. The waiting period is typically put in place to prevent people from signing up for insurance only when they need dental work done. Waiting periods can vary depending on the dental insurance plan, but common waiting periods are 6-12 months for basic and major services like fillings, extractions, and root canals. Preventive services like cleanings and X-rays may have no waiting period or a shorter waiting period.

What is dental insurance annual maximum?

The dental insurance annual maximum is the total dollar amount that an insurance plan will pay for covered dental services during a single benefit year. Once this maximum amount is reached, the policyholder is responsible for paying all additional dental expenses out of pocket. The annual maximum varies depending on the specific dental insurance plan and can range from a few hundred dollars to several thousand dollars per year.

Can dental insurance be deducted on taxes?

Dental insurance premiums can sometimes be deducted on taxes if you itemize your deductions and if the total medical and dental expenses exceed a certain percentage of your adjusted gross income (AGI). However, there are some restrictions and limitations on what expenses can be deducted, so it's best to consult a tax professional or refer to the IRS guidelines to determine your eligibility for deducting dental insurance on taxes.

Who is eligible for dental insurance?

Eligibility for dental insurance depends on the specific plan, as insurance companies may have different requirements. Generally, anyone can apply for individual or family dental insurance plans, while employer-sponsored plans are available to employees who meet certain criteria such as working a certain number of hours or being in a specific job category. Medicaid and CHIP programs also offer dental coverage to eligible low-income individuals and families.

Can you be denied dental insurance?

Yes, it is possible to be denied dental insurance. Dental insurance companies have their own underwriting criteria and may deny coverage based on factors such as pre-existing conditions, age, and other health-related factors.

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