3 things to know about the cost of braces in Malaysia

So you’ve put it off for long enough and finally are getting your braces done. But wait!

Before you trot off to the dentist, you need to brace yourself about the costs you will incur because as we all know, dental work can cost an arm and a leg.

So here goes…

1. There are three types of braces with very different price points

(Source: From a Twitter follower, cross-checked with a dentist who said, “ya, more or less lor”).

Conventional braces

• WHAT IT IS: Braces in which the wire is secured with elastic bands. Most people opt for this.

• COST: GP – RM5,000++ | Specialist – RM8-10,000.

Damon braces

• WHAT IT IS: Braces in which the wire is secured by a “slide mechanism”. Doesn’t look as “metal” as conventional braces. Is sometimes referred to as self-ligating braces, or “self-lig” for short.

• TYPES: Metal (silver) and ceramic (white). The ceramic ones cost a few thousand ringgit more.

• COST (metal) : GP – RM7,000++ | Specialist – RM12,000.

Clear aligners (like Invisalign)

• WHAT IT IS: A set of 10 or so retainers that you wear consistently; each set adjusts the teeth a little bit straighter than the last one.

• COST: RM15-20,000.

According to some dentists, Damon braces have the following benefits:

• Faster results than conventional braces.

• Less painful than conventional braces.

• Usually doesn’t require the extraction of teeth.

Most dentists ask for a deposit, followed by a monthly payment. This includes the cost of installing the braces, adjusting it every four to five weeks, and retainers. The elastic band and dental wax is also included.

2. Are cheap braces a possibility?

Yes. But you’re not going to like both options.

Government hospitals

• Some have mentioned in forums that adult braces from government hospitals cost around RM1,100.

• Quite a few people say, “confirm slow one”. But if you haven’t tried it, you won’t know for sure, right?

Fake braces

This is scary. Apparently some have bought cheap braces from sellers on Instagram that cost only RM580. See a Facebook user’s post below.

BRACES RM580

In summary:

• They don’t freaking work. The wire is cheap and doesn’t work, which defeats the purpose of the braces.

• The “dentist” comes to the house/gets people to come to his/her house (not clinic).

• They fix the braces in the mouth without gloves (ewww!!!).

• One person, after getting the fake braces, got scared when hearing accounts of others who got infections and even had their teeth fall out. She had to go to an actual dentist to take the braces off. Was told that it’s not uncommon.

• The “dentist” said he would charge to take off the braces and fix broken brackets (caused by his own shoddy work).

3. Extra costs

• RM510 for scaling and polishing of teeth, X-ray and study model. The scaling/polishing is optional but the X-ray and study model is mandatory (to make a mould of your teeth, pic below).

• Tooth extraction (if any) at RM100 per tooth.

• RM30 for painkillers for tooth extraction.

• RM8 for antibacterial mouthwash.

• A lot of Paracetamol.

• RM16.75 for two 750ml mouthwash (Guardian brand, on sale).

• RM12.55 for two five-in-a-pack Interdental brush (Guardian brand, on sale).

Conclusion

The cost of braces is as stated above, more or less. Pay for quality – that’s very important.

Also pick a dentist at a location you like. You will have to visit them quite a few times during the process. To avoid transportation costs, select a dentist within walking distance from where you live.

This article first appeared in ringgitohringgit.com

Suraya is a corporate writer-for-hire and the blogger behind personal finance website Ringgit Oh Ringgit. She is more of a minimalist, less of a consumerist, a konon DIY enthusiast, a let’s-support-small-businesses-over-big-corporations kinda girl. Prior to her current role, she worked in various capacities within the non-profit industry.