The main parts to your braces are:
Small square attachments that are bonded to all front and side teeth. They act as ‘handles’ on the teeth, allowing the archwire to apply pressure to the teeth. Brackets can be made of stainless steel (silver) or ceramic (tooth-coloured).
Bands are thin rings of metal fitted around the back molars and cemented in place. Usually they have welded tubes into which the archwire and / or headgear slides. Bands are stronger than brackets because they go all the way around the teeth.
These are the main wires that fit into the slots on the brackets and through the tubes on the outside of the bands. Usually there are two archwires, one upper and one lower.
Archwires come in a range of metals and sizes to allow for different movements of teeth during the different stages of treatment. Thin flexible archwires are used to provide pressure to move teeth; strong rigid archwires form a guide along which the teeth move.
Modules are small elastic ‘o’ rings that are stretched around the four corners of the bracket to hold the archwhire in place. There are plenty of colours to choose from.
We also have silver (which blends in with the stainless steel brackets) and clear (which blends in with ceramic brackets) for the less adventurous patients. Be aware, though, that clear modules pick up yellow food colouring easily, particularly from curries.
Modules are changed at each visit so there is plenty of opportunity to try out new colours or to replace discoloured clear ones.
These are fine stainless steel wires that, like modules, are tied around the four corners of the bracket to hold the archwire in place. They are used whenever the archwire needs to be held in tighter than a module allows. Sometimes they are called ligatures.
A length of linked modules stretched over a group of teeth to close spaces between the teeth. Like modules, it can be coloured or clear, although clear power chain is more elastic and is used more frequently.
Used to attach elastic bands.
Hooks can be on brackets or bands.
Small coils of stainless steel wire that fit over the archwire and open space between teeth.
Space Age Wires
In the early stages of your treatment we use new high tech wires that were originally developed by NASA. These wires are heat-activated and have a shape memory. When cold, they are very flexible, allowing us to place them into the brackets easily.
When warmed by the heat of your mouth, the wire will gradually become stiffer and return to its original horseshoe shape, moving your teeth with it. You can use cold drinks to reduce the discomfort during the early days of your treatment, and warm drinks to speed things up a little later on. These wires are also special because they don’t need to be adjusted or changed as often, meaning less time away from school or work.
If you have any questions regarding orthodontic treatment, please click here to contact the team at us today.
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