Do you have braces? If so, you may be wondering what those rubber bands are for. Aside from keeping your brackets attached to your archwire, they can actually speed up your treatment process. Here at Lake Jackson Orthodontics, we use rubber bands to help braces do their job efficiently by correcting bite alignment and other oral concerns. In this blog post, we will discuss how Dr. McGrory uses rubber bands to supercharge your braces treatment.
What are orthodontic rubber bands?
Orthodontic rubber bands, or ligatures, are often used in braces treatment to correct tooth alignment and help move teeth into the correct position. They’re made of high-quality, durable rubber and come in various sizes, shapes, and colors. They assist your braces in shifting your teeth into alignment to correct your bite fully.
What are the different types of rubber bands used in orthodontics?
During your orthodontic treatment, you may encounter a few different types of rubber bands:
- O-Rings: These are the smallest type of rubber bands and are used to correct minor alignment issues by attaching the wire to your brackets, which moves your teeth into position over time.
- Power chains: This refers to several ligatures chained together designed to put more pressure on a particular part of your jaw. Typically, power chains are used to treat gaps between teeth or even rotated teeth.
- Elastics: These are the largest rubber bands and are used to correct more complex alignment issues. They are typically attached to hooks on your braces’ top and bottom brackets to fix bite issues.
Dr. McGrory may use rubber bands to connect the upper and lower braces, pull the top arch down or up, or even align teeth for braces behind other teeth. Lake Jackson Orthodontics offers an array of colored rubber bands to make your treatment fun and efficient.
How do orthodontic rubber bands work?
The rubber bands are attached to the braces and the brackets on your teeth. Depending on the treatment plan created for you, they are then adjusted to provide pressure on the necessary teeth. As you progress through your treatment, Dr. McGrory will change the ligatures to ensure they provide enough tension and create the proper force on each tooth.
One of the benefits of using rubber bands is that they eliminate the need for more complex and bulky appliances, such as headgear and springs. Although they may seem like a nuisance at the beginning, they are, in fact, a relatively effective and discrete method of aligning your teeth!
What are rubber bands used for in orthodontics?
Aside from making your smile look stylish and colorful, rubber bands are used to correct irregular bites, otherwise known as malocclusions. In many cases, this causes difficulty chewing and speaking. If left untreated, malocclusions can even lead to TMJ (jaw) problems down the road. The rubber bands place pressure on the jaw joint and muscles, allowing them to realign correctly. Not only does this help your braces straighten your smile more effectively, but it improves your oral health over time.
Gaps between teeth
In addition to correcting malocclusions, rubber bands close gaps between teeth. This means that if you have any gaps in your smile due to missing teeth or natural spacing, rubber bands can help move your teeth together and fill in those pesky spaces.
Overbites & Underbites
Lastly, Dr. McGrory can use rubber bands to reduce your overbite or underbite, which is when your upper and lower teeth don’t line up correctly.
Start your braces journey with Dr. McGrory today!
At Lake Jackson Orthodontics, our team of experienced orthodontists takes the time to discuss any braces treatment with you in detail so that you fully understand how rubber bands can help your braces do their job better. During your consultation, Dr. McGrory will help you know whether rubber bands could be a beneficial addition to your treatment. Contact us to learn more about the orthodontic treatments available at our Lake Jackson office.