How Do Braces Work – And What Types of Braces Are There
Braces use constant, gentle pressure, which over time, move teeth into their proper positions. Your braces are at work every moment of your orthodontic treatment. The two main components of your braces are: the brackets that are placed on your teeth and the main archwire that connects them. The bracket is a piece of shaped metal or ceramic that we affix to each tooth. The archwire is bent to reflect your "ideal" bite. In other words, it reflects the way we want your teeth to look after treatment.
The wire threads through the brackets and as the wire tries to return to its original shape, it applies pressure to move your teeth. Picture your tooth resting in your jawbone. With pressure on one side from the archwire, the bone on the other side gives way. The tooth moves. New bone grows in behind.
Attached to your braces, elastics (rubber bands) exert the proper force that creates the right amount of pressure to move teeth. In order for this force to remain constant, elastics must be worn all the time and changed every day.
What types of braces are there?
Empower® Clear Brackets
Beauty and performance come together in Empower Clear. This aesthetic bracket gives you the versatility and ease of self ligation, while giving your patients the beautiful smile they deserve both during and after treatment.
Metal braces are the most popular with kids and teenagers. They love using different colors of ligature ties. These braces are much smaller than ever before.
To get the results of perfect teeth without the look of conventional braces, try revolutionary clear braces. These braces give you the same results associated with regular braces. Unlike previous designs, they will not stain or discolor. Ask Dr.Touni about clear braces, and be surprised at how inconspicuous they can be! Worry no more about getting braces; See how you can get a dazzling and healthy smile without having the metallic look of braces! Translucent clear ceramic braces are the most popular with adults.
Orthodontic headgear is a very important part of the treatment for some patients. Headgear creates forces that guide the growth of the face and jaws. It also is used to move teeth into better positions or to prevent teeth from moving.
Maintaining constant use of your headgear will achieve the best results. If instructions on usage are not followed, treatment will take longer and our treatment plan may have to change.
- Always be careful when removing your headgear. If the headgear is removed carelessly, the part that fits in your mouth and attaches to your teeth could injure your lips, cheeks, face and possibly your eyes.
- Never remove the headgear until the straps have been disconnected.
- Never lift the headgear over your face.
- Never wear the headgear when running or playing sports.
Take your headgear with you to every appointment. If it becomes soiled, Dr.Touni or an assistant will tell you how it should be cleaned.
Your teeth may be tender for the first few days of wearing your headgear. This tenderness will disappear as you adjust to the new pressures.
Let us know if you continue to be uncomfortable for more than a few days. Wearing headgear is necessary for your treatment. Follow the instructions exactly, and you will complete your treatment without any changes in your treatment plan.
Removable appliances, unlike conventional braces, are used to retain teeth in their corrected positions and in some cases, to influence growth of the jaws in order to effect changes in facial structure. In addition, they are often used before and in conjunction with fixed appliances.
Removable appliances are not utilized to treat all orthodontic problems. It takes skill, and experience to recognize conditions that will respond favorably to removable appliances. Timing of such therapy also is very important.
Although the patient can easily take out removable appliances, there may be a tendency not to wear them as we have prescribed. This means your teeth, jaws and muscles may move back toward their original positions.
Removable appliances require care. Although you may notice an effect on eating and speaking along with an increase in the flow of saliva, you will eventually adjust to the appliance.
Once the active period is completed, your braces are removed. The next step is called retention. Retainers are utilized to hold your teeth in their new positions until your bone, gums, and muscles adapt to the new teeth positions. You must wear your retainer as instructed, otherwise your teeth may move toward their original positions and the benefit of wearing your braces will be lost.
Dr. Touni will determine how long you need to wear your retainer. Time varies with each patient. Some people may need retainers for an extended period of time in order to eliminate shifting of the teeth. In some cases, permanent retention may be necessary.
The retention period is an important part of your overall treatment and should not be neglected!
Remember; wear them in your mouth, not in your pocket. Retainers work when you follow our instructions.
Clean your retainers! After meals, clean all parts of the retainer with a toothbrush cold water and toothpaste.
Handle your retainers with care. Retainers are easier to lose, and expensive to replace. If you take your retainers out, always place them in your retainer case for safety.
Opal Seal Enamel Protection
Before placing the braces, Dr Touni seals each tooth with Opal Seal. This material provides protection against cavity formation. Of course, the most important way to prevent cavities is to brush as instructed. Please watch the video below to learn more about Opal Seal.