Why is orthodontics so expensive: Affordable orthodontic treatment options

by Khamzat Asabaev in Oct 11 2022

When you consider orthodontic treatment your first concern is the price. For the absolute majority of people, the price is prohibitive. This is the main reason why so many people decide to try treatment with no direct doctor’s involvement – the cost is significantly lower than regular orthodontic treatment.

I believe that the existing price frame is unacceptable, and people shall be able to perfect their teeth, disregarding their family’s income. A confident and healthy smile is something that all of us need, but not everyone can afford it. Before I explain how we at SoftSmile are making perfect smiles affordable, I’d like to explain in detail what is the current situation.

Let’s try to disassemble those prohibitive prices you most likely will pay to an orthodontist for a set of aligners.
 best affordable orthodontic treatment

 First, the essential part of the treatment is a doctor. Doctors determine treatment strategy and are accountable for the result. They usually are the only people with whom patients associate the whole treatment. Surprisingly, despite all of this, the doctor’s share is just a fraction of the overall cost. The paradox is that even if a doctor decides to give you a substantial discount or tend you for free, the general prices still will be very high.

The next traditionally expensive element is the fabrication of aligners. This part encompasses the cost of materials, printing, polishing, and packing of those aligners. There was a time when just one company, AlignTech, could produce aligners at scale. Doctors have been requesting aligners from them for over two decades (including treatment planning and fabricating) and did not have any alternative.

With tremendous progress in 3D printing and the development of new plastic materials, access and affordability of 3D printing allowed any dental office in the world to start their own production.

While the high-quality fabrication of aligners is a complicated exercise, requiring intricate equipment and devoted professionals, it is no longer a unique practice reserved for a limited number of producers. Many people now know how to build up manufacturing and start fabricating aligners.

best affordable orthodontic treatment

The real secret sauce of any orthodontic treatment is a digital treatment plan—those who have it charge enormous fees. Doctors have a pretty obvious choice – either request aligners from “All-In” companies like AlignTech or ClearCorrect and pay an enormous price for the device or try to make them on their own. Even having the ability to fabricate aligners in-house or request printing from specialized manufacturers, those who do not have access to decent treatment planner just can’t provide high-quality care to their patients. As a result, a patient is always in a rough situation – either pay a price that bars the absolute majority of people from the treatment or try substitutes with no doctor’s involvement.

When we at SoftSmile dived in and analyzed all those elements, our goal of making aligners treatment affordable became more realistic. The treatment planner is in the center of that revolution because of Vision:

  • is as fast and precise that any fabricating practice in the world can start making aligners and offer doctors and patients the best affordable orthodontic treatment price for their services;
  • can be integrated directly with 3D printers and automates most of the tasks to be performed by technicians or technical staff on the production spot;
  • so intuitive that less experienced doctors or technicians can start making high-quality setups in no-time;
  • simply the best from a price-quality perspective.

Having solved the “Digital Treatment Planner” mystery, we affect all the elements of the pricing. More doctors will be able to offer treatment by aligners; the service will be more accessible and widespread (no need to travel to big cities for getting aligners),  laboratories will have the fastest and intuitive software, which would reduce their costs and overall price for doctors… high-quality aligners will become way more affordable.

Hang in there – the SoftSmiling disruption is on the way!


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