Cosmetic Dentistry Costs
Cosmetic dentistry costs range from a couple hundred dollars to several thousand depending on what type of work you want done. These treatments are rarely, if ever, covered by dental insurance. You will need to pay out of pocket for any aesthetic tooth procedures. However, most cosmetic dentists offer monthly payment plans or recommend third-party credit companies who can help you with a dental loan.
Factors that Influence Cosmetic Dentistry Costs
There are a number of factors that can affect cosmetic dentistry prices:
- Whether the treatment is done in office or at home (e.g., tooth whitening)
- How many visits the procedure will require
- The materials used (dental composite is less costly than porcelain)
- Whether any dental prosthetics are fabricated (each lab has its own fee schedule)
- The total number of teeth treated (some dentists offer a discount for improving several teeth at once)
- The nature and extent of the flaws being concealed or corrected
- Special offers or promotions for specific procedures or for new patients
- The area of the country where you live
- The experience level of the cosmetic dentist (prosthodontists often charge more because they are board certified in tooth restoration)
- The type of equipment the dentist has on site
- The perks available (cosmetic dentistry spas tend to offer lots of extras like streaming TV, aromatherapy or even warm paraffin hand treatments)
Cosmetic Dentistry Prices for Common Procedures
These prices are average ranges only. Pricing can vary considerably based on the factors listed above.
Tooth whitening: $100 to $1,000. Take-home kits are the cheapest option, and in-office whitening that uses hydrogen peroxide gel and a “laser” (lamp) to activate the gel are most expensive. Since this is a very popular type of treatment, you can usually find cosmetic dentists who are offering deep discounts in an effort to earn your business. You might get a take-home kit free with a regular exam and cleaning. You may be able to find deals for as much as 80 percent off in-office tooth whitening. The reason cosmetic dentists can afford to offer these price discounts is simple: whitening is something that needs to be done on a regular basis to maintain the results you want. The dentist is counting on the fact that you’ll like having whiter teeth and you’ll keep coming back in the future.
Tooth-colored filling to replace an unsightly metal amalgam filling: $150 to $200. The larger the filling, the more the procedure is likely to cost.
Dental composite bonded to tooth to fix a small chip or crack: $200 to $600. The more surfaces the dentist fixes, the more expensive the bonding process will be. For example, filling in a chip on the front surface of the enamel would cost less than reconstructing a corner of the tooth.
Porcelain restorations to replace large metal fillings or crowns: $600 to $1,200. These dental prosthetics are custom fabricated in a lab which affects the cost. Inlays and onlays that must fill large areas cost the most. Crowns tend to cost somewhere in the middle of the price range.
Porcelain veneers: $1,000 to $1,400 each. This includes various brands like Lumineers, Da Vinci, Empress and Dura Thin. Some manufacturers/fabricators advertise their brands as less expensive than others. However, the final price you pay is really determined by the dentist performing your procedure. Some charge the same for all brands regardless of the cost of materials and lab fabrication. Others charge more or less based on how easy the veneers are to install and shape. Cosmetic dentistry prices for veneers tend to go down a little when you get several teeth veneered at one time.
Gum contouring: $1,000 or more. This would be the approximate cost for fixing a “gummy smile.” The medical term is gingivectomy (removal of gum tissue) or gingivoplasty (reshaping of gum tissue). If you only need the gum line reshaped around one or two teeth, it’s likely to cost less. If you require gum grafting to add tissue, the cost may be substantially more.
Invisalign Express aligner trays to correct minor crookedness or tooth spacing issues: $1,800 to $4,500. These aligner trays are only worn for 10 weeks and are reserved for patients who don’t require much tooth movement (in other words, when straightening is mostly for cosmetic reasons). This is another treatment that many dental offices run specials on periodically; so be sure to shop around for a good price from a reputable dentist.
Dental implant to fill a gap in your smile: $1,500 to $3,000+. This includes the cost for the installation of the titanium post, the abutment to hold the crown and the porcelain crown itself. Cosmetic dentistry costs associated with the placement of a dental implant may or may not be partially covered by dental insurance if this procedure is part of a smile reconstruction. Usually, insurance will only pay for a less expensive restoration such as a bridge. But it doesn’t hurt to ask!