Elastics (Rubber Bands)
Wearing elastics (or rubber bands) improves the fit of your upper and lower teeth. Wear rubber bands as instructed, and remember the rubber bands work far more efficiently if they’re worn as prescribed.
The Forsus Fatigue Resistant Device is an alternative to headgear that promotes growth in adolescents, helping to eliminate excessive overbites, improve the fit of teeth, and possibly prevent the need for jaw surgery.
In our office, reverse-pull headgear is used to help correct underbites. An underbite is a situation where the patient’s lower front teeth are in front of the upper front teeth.
This type of headgear puts a gentle pulling force on your upper jaw to help promote forward growth of the upper jaw. The goal is to achieve positive overlap of your upper teeth over your lower teeth.
The MARA® appliance reduces overbite by encouraging the lower jaw to grow forward while putting a light reverse force on the upper molars. This fixed appliance is used mostly for growing adolescents and is worn for about 12 to 15 months.
The palatal expander “expands” (or widens) your upper jaw by putting gentle pressure on your upper molars each time an adjustment is made. We will instruct you about when and how to adjust your expander. When you achieve the desired expansion, you will wear the appliance for several months to solidify the expansion and to prevent regression.
Positioners are sometimes used to complete the final tooth movements in your orthodontic treatment. With your full cooperation, you should only need to wear the positioner appliance for one to three months.
Retainers may be removable or fixed. They hold your teeth in their new, correct positions after your teeth have been straightened. Dr. Ward will instruct you on how to care for your retainer and about the duration of the wear. Wearing your retainer as directed is crucial to prevent regression of your treatment.
Separators or Spacers
Separators are little rubber doughnuts that may be placed between your teeth to push them apart so orthodontic bands may be placed during your next appointment. The separators will be removed before we place the bands. Separators do not mix well with sticky foods, toothpicks, or floss.