The Expected Costs for Correcting an Overbite

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Table of Contents

  1. Overbite Causes
  2. Treatment Cost
  3. Treatment Options
  4. When To Expect to Pay More
  5. Getting Help With Your Bills
  6. How Long Will Treatment Take?
  7. What’s the Most Cost-Effective Option?
  8. Make the Best Choice

Ideally, your top and bottom teeth nest perfectly with no gaps, chips, or cracks. But when your upper jaw juts out too far, your unusual smile could get you noticed for all the wrong reasons.

Braces, aligners, and surgery can amend overbites, but these solutions have deep cost differences.

Aligners tend to be much less expensive than braces. But if your teeth are far out of ideal position, you might need solutions that increase your cost. Surgery is the most expensive option, but it's the right choice if your overbite is severe.

What Causes an Overbite?

Close your mouth, pull your lips from your teeth, and look at your jaw. You should see about half of your bottom teeth. If your upper teeth cover up much more of their lower counterparts, you could have an overbite.

Some people are born with this issue, but others develop it due to the following:

  • Childhood habits: Sucking your thumb, gnawing on a pacifier, and chewing on things like pens and pencils put pressure on your teeth. They can shift out of position, and that new configuration solidifies as you grow.

  • GrindingPushing your teeth together as you sleep can shift them from their proper positions.

  • Injury: Lose a tooth, and the others might shift into the space left behind.

An overbite isn't simply a cosmetic problem. If your bottom teeth always hit the top of your mouth, you might develop ulcers. You might also chip your teeth, and keeping them clean could be difficult.

The American Association of Orthodontists says overbites can be addressed in these ways:

  • Pushing top teeth further into the supporting bone

  • Moving side and back teeth to open up the bite and add space

How Much Will Treatment Cost?

It will cost $2,000 to more than $40,000 to correct your overbite, on average, depending on what solution you choose.

Here's a quick cost breakdown:

  • Braces: About $5,500, depending on the dentist, per a 2020 survey of dental practitioners in the Pacific Northwest

  • Traditional aligners: About $5,500, per the aligner company Invisalign

  • Doctor-directed, at-home aligners: About $2,000, depending on the company you choose, per our research

  • Surgery: Between $20,000 to $40,000, depending on the severity of your overbite, per CostHelper

Both braces and aligners can amend an overbite issue, but aligners are best for mild to moderate cases, and by choosing this option, you could save yourself thousands.

Are There Different Types of Treatment Options for Overbites?

If you have an overbite, you can change your smile with the help of a talented team. Three different options are available.

Aligners are translucent trays that fit over the teeth. As the teeth move, new trays are swapped in. Unlike braces, which stay on the teeth all the time, aligners can slide on and off when you need to eat, drink, or participate in something important, like a job interview.

Some types of aligners are made in dentist or orthodontist offices, and their prices can be similar to those of braces. Since braces cost an average of $5,500 per a 2020 survey, expect to pay the same for aligners.

Direct-to-consumer aligners are made from models of your teeth. While dental professionals supervise the movement, few or no appointments are involved. That cuts the price dramatically. Solutions like this cost anywhere from $945 to about $2,000, according to our research.

Braces consist of brackets attached to teeth and wires that connect all teeth. As the teeth move, orthodontists tighten the wires in several appointments. A team can use shortened wires to tighten your dental arch and bring your top and bottom teeth closer together.

In a survey of dental professionals conducted in the Pacific Northwest in 2020, the average price for comprehensive orthodontic treatment in adults was about $5,500.

Braces also come with added brackets and attachments, so orthodontic teams can use bands and headgear to change the shape of your jaw. Expect to pay more for these options.

The surgery used to fix a severe overbite is called orthognathic surgery, and it's usually completed in people who are also using braces.

Teams use titanium plates and screws to position your jaw properly. During recovery, your team will place bands around your brackets to seal your mouth shut so your bones can heal.

This surgery is expensive. According to CostHelper, this type of surgery can cost between $20,000 and $40,000, including consultations, the surgeon’s fee, the facility fee, and follow-up care.

When Should you Expect To Pay more For A Correction?

If given a chance, most people would opt to pay less money for the same product. But sometimes, fixing an overbite is complicated. Those complications could add money to your bill.

If your gap is very large, your dentist may need to address other issues before your teeth are straightened, including these:

  • Infections: If your teeth hit the top of your mouth, deep wounds can form. Bacteria in your mouth can multiply, and those wounds can fester, leading to infection.

  • Extractions: If your teeth are packed too tightly into your mouth, there might not be room to move them. Your doctor might need to pull a tooth or two to make room for movement.

All these procedures come with added costs, and sometimes, the issues left behind can't be corrected with aligners. These products tend to work best for people with mild or moderate smile adjustment needs. Braces might be best if you're missing several teeth and recovering from surgery.

In addition, experts say, a standard overbite should take a year or two to correct. But your recovery could take longer if you have a complicated case. Some professionals charge more for taking on a patient like this.

Get Help With Your Bills

Your teeth are critical to your health, and addressing an overbite could be the best way to keep you healthy over the long term. There are plenty of options to keep your bills small and your overall costs reasonable.

For some families, that means tapping into insurance. Some plans, including those from MetLife, offer orthodontics coverage. Your dental insurance plan could cover the following expenses:

  • Preventive care, such as cleanings needed to keep your teeth healthy while you’re in treatment

  • Basic care, such as toothaches and gum issues caused by dental disease that happened while you’re in treatment

  • Major care, such as surgical procedures like orthognathic surgery

In a standard plan like this, your orthodontic care would only be covered if you needed surgery. Your plan might cover major care at 50%, so you’d have to foot the rest of the bill yourself.

Some dental plans include cosmetic procedures like braces and aligners, but many do not. Your orthodontic provider can help you check coverage.

Health savings accounts may also be helpful. Your employer may offer the opportunity to move money into your account on a pre-tax basis. Those funds are yours to spend on any qualified medical expense, including braces or aligners. You may also reduce your taxes if you use a program like this.

How Long Will Treatment Take?

All the options we’ve discussed come with different treatment time frames. Your doctor can help you determine which version is right for you, and you’ll be provided with a detailed schedule of your treatment, but this table can help you understand the time commitment involved with each version if you have a moderate overbite: 


Time Frame


12-24 months

Traditional aligners

12-18 months

At-home aligners

6-18 months


4-6 weeks

Experts say a standard overbite should take a year or two to correct. But your recovery could take longer if you have a complicated case.

What’s the Most Cost-Effective Option?

Imagine you’ve been to the doctor, and all the options we’ve mentioned are appropriate to fix your overbite. What’s the most effective way to correct the problem when considering the time involved and the cost to repair the overbite? This table can help you understand the fees, timeframes, and risks/benefits at a glance:



Time Frames





12-24 months

Might be more appropriate for significant cases

Longer treatment time frames for a higher price, higher risk of dental disease

Traditional aligners


12-18 months

Easy to remove for dental cleanings, less visible than braces

Longer treatment time frames, higher price than at-home aligners

At-home aligners


6-18 months

Shorter treatment times, easy to remove, least expensive option

Requires close compliance with treatment, might not be appropriate for severe cases



4-6 weeks

Might be covered by standard dental insurance plans at 50%, short treatment times

Even with insurance coverage, this can be expensive

Make the Best Choice for Your Overbite

Investigate your options carefully, and you can find a solution that helps you improve your smile without breaking your budget.

While clear teeth aligners are certainly appealing in terms of cost and the treatment timeline, they don't work for everyone. You'll need to have your specific overbite case assessed to determine its severity.

Most direct-to-consumer aligner companies will have you take an impression of your teeth (top and bottom). A dental professional will then evaluate whether you are a good candidate. If they don't think aligners can correct your overbite, they'll let you know.

Doing this initial assessment to see if aligners will work for you is a good place to start. Some companies will refund the cost of this assessment process if they determine their product won't work for you.

You should see an orthodontist if you learn that aligners aren't a valid option to fix your overbite. They can recommend specific overbite correction plans — like braces, headgear, or surgery — that can correct your overbite.

Disclaimer: This article is intended to promote understanding of and knowledge about general oral health topics. It is not intended to serve as dental or other professional health advice and is not intended to be used for diagnosis or treatment of any condition or symptom. You should consult a dentist or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment.