Updated on February 7, 2024
6 min read

How to Use Insurance to Pay for Clear Aligners

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Many people prefer clear aligners over traditional metal braces. Clear aligners gradually straighten crooked teeth and fix bite issues.

Unlike traditional braces, clear aligners are nearly invisible and removable. This makes them a preferred orthodontic solution.

How to Use Insurance to Pay for Aligners 

The process of submitting insurance claims for aligners is similar to that of other types of orthodontic treatment.

There are many ways to help maximize coverage. Obtaining some coverage for those with no orthodontic benefits is possible.

Understanding Your Coverage

Before filing any claims, find out more information about your eligibility and coverage. Get a pre-estimate or pre-determination of what your out–of–pocket costs would be. Benefits vary significantly from policy to policy. 

Filing the Claim

Once you’re familiar with the plan, it’s easier to determine how the case should be filed. You usually need to submit the correct paperwork to your insurer. Then, the aligner company helps with the rest. 

However, the process differs depending on the insurance company and the aligner brand.

Some insurance companies ask for monthly or quarterly claim submissions to continue treatment. In those cases, there will be more than five claims submitted. Other insurance companies only pay for a maximum amount of 24 months of treatment. 

Separating the Claims

Separating the claims allows the insurance company to pay some of the fees from the person’s annual maximum. This is opposed to their lifetime maximum.

This method also allows some patients to receive benefits from their insurance toward treatment. These are the people who may not otherwise have orthodontic coverage.

Filing the claims separately can also help quicken the payment process. It can give you an idea of how the insurance company may handle future claims and payments.

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Does Dental Insurance Cover Clear Aligners?

Some dental insurance plans may cover clear aligners. However, coverage depends on the following:

  • Brand of aligners
  • Type of aligners
  • Orthodontist you choose

Here are some ways to find out whether your insurance covers clear aligners:

  • Ask your benefits manager at work
  • Call your insurance plan’s customer service line
  • Check your benefits package for ‘orthodontic treatment’

In severe cases deemed medically necessary, medical insurance can cover orthodontic treatment. This usually occurs for facial deformities, tooth impactions, and severe bite problems.

What Does Dental Insurance Typically Cover?

In general, dental insurance will cover some of the costs of the following:

  • Preventative dental care
  • Restorative procedures
  • Orthodontic services

Different dental insurance companies will have different policies when they cover orthodontic treatment. Every insurance question comes down to your specific dental insurance plan.

Insurers typically provide partial dental coverage plans for orthodontics, including braces or clear aligners

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Find the best at-home clear aligners for mild misalignment. See our expert recommendations.

Clear Aligners Insurance Coverage (By Brand)

Not all aligners are covered equally. Here’s how coverage varies by brand: 

Invisalign

Many dental insurance plans cover Invisalign treatment the same way they cover braces.

Invisalign insurance coverage depends on your insurance. For instance, your insurance may cover a certain percentage of your Invisalign treatment. Or, it may pay for a specific amount of the Invisalign cost.1 

Typically, there is a lifetime cap on the amount insurance will pay for orthodontic treatment like Invisalign. 

ClearCorrect

If your dental insurance provider includes orthodontic benefits, they’ll likely cover some of your ClearCorrect treatment. 

Like with most brands, insurance coverage varies on a case-by-case basis. Sometimes, an insurer will consider ClearCorrect cosmetic and refuse to cover it.

You shouldn’t assume that ClearCorrect will be covered just because your dentist recommends it. Always check with your insurance provider first.

Candid

Candid is in-network with the following insurers:

  • Anthem Blue Cross
  • Aetna Anthem Blue Cross
  • Anthem BlueCross BlueShield
  • Empire BlueCross
  • Empire BlueCross BlueShield
  • Aetna

If Candid is in-network with your insurance provider and you have orthodontic coverage, you can be covered for an average of $1,000 at checkout. You don’t have to wait for a reimbursement.2

If you don’t see your insurance provider on Candid’s in-network list, you can send your information to them. Then, they’ll submit the claim on your behalf. 

However, Candid can’t guarantee whether or not you’ll be reimbursed. Candid strongly recommends that you check your insurance coverage ahead of time.

Ask your insurer if you have orthodontic benefits and if it covers remote treatments billed with the code D8090.

Byte

It’s possible to save money on Byte aligners if your insurance covers orthodontics. Speak with a Byte insurance expert for help and advice on the matter.

With Byte, it’s possible to receive 50 percent coverage, depending on your insurance plan.3

Consider that costs vary depending on various factors, including:

  • Insurance eligibility
  • Current promotions
  • Availability of FSA/HSA funds

NewSmile

Most dental insurance plans cover customers for a portion of the cost of NewSmile aligners.

NewSmile costs 75 percent less than many other clear aligner brands, which already provides impressive savings.4 

Contact NewSmile to see if you’re qualified for coverage. However, know that NewSmile impression kits are typically not covered by insurance.

AlignerCo

With AlignerCo, a qualified dentist or orthodontist in your state will approve and assess your care remotely instead of in person.

Some insurers consider AlignerCo like other orthodontic treatments and offer coverage accordingly. 

However, AlignerCo does not include regular, in-person checkups. As such, some insurers consider Aligner a do-it-yourself treatment and decline to provide coverage.

AlignerCo doesn’t have any partnerships with insurers that make them in-network to streamline the process. They may still be covered by dental insurance, but you’ll need to see if they provide reimbursement first.

6 Month Smiles

Some dental and health insurance plans may cover some of 6 Month Smiles treatment. 

Like most brands, contacting your insurance provider to check if your policy covers it is best.5

Can You Pay for Aligners With an HSA/FSA? 

An HSA or FSA may help pay for clear aligners. But there are limits on what types of medical care are covered. 

The basic guidelines are: if treatment is essential medical care, it’s covered. If it’s cosmetic, it isn’t.

Regarding dental treatment, anything that treats or prevents disease or related health concerns qualifies for reimbursement. If treatment addresses aesthetic concerns, it won’t be covered. 

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Straighten your teeth conveniently at home. Compare the best clear aligner brands.

Summary

  • Dental insurance may cover the fees of invisible aligners in some cases. 
  • Coverage depends on the brand and type of aligners and the orthodontist used
  • It’s important to check directly with the clear aligner brand to see if insurance can help pay for the procedure
  • You usually need to submit the correct paperwork to your insurer to receive reimbursement. Then the aligner company helps with the rest
  • It’s possible to pay for aligners with an HSA/FSA. However, there are limits on what is covered.

Ready for Affordable Dental Care?

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What’s Next?

Discover the best fit for your smile.

Explore top at-home clear aligner brands.

Last updated on February 7, 2024
7 Sources Cited
Last updated on February 7, 2024
All NewMouth content is medically reviewed and fact-checked by a licensed dentist or orthodontist to ensure the information is factual, current, and relevant.

We have strict sourcing guidelines and only cite from current scientific research, such as scholarly articles, dentistry textbooks, government agencies, and medical journals. This also includes information provided by the American Dental Association (ADA), the American Association of Orthodontics (AAO), and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).
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