How Do Braces Work

Have you ever wondered how do braces work?  How is all the metal and elastics in your mouth going to straighten your teeth?  Before you got the braces put in you probably had crooked teeth, a large overbite or some other issued the dentist determined needed help.  Your dentist referred you to an orthodontist to help fix this issue and straighten your teeth.  So how are they going to help you get a toothpaste smile.

Parts of Your Braces

There are just a couple of basic parts to your braces so let’s go over them now.  The metal portion of your braces that are attached to each tooth is call the bracket.  The orthodontist will use a bonding treatment to hold the brackets in place.  The brackets are attached to each other with archwires.  Archwires are thin metal pieces that give the pressure that will eventually move your teeth.  There are also elastics that are changed every time you go to the orthodontist to get your braces tightened.  Here is what it looks like to have your braces installed.

How Braces Work

During your treatment all the parts of your braces work together to move your teeth into the right spot.  The wire and elastics work together to create a gentle pressure, this makes the membranes on one side of your teeth expand and constrict on the other.  That helps to loosen your teeth away from the gumline so they can move to the right spit.  Don’t worry, the bone grows back and your teeth will be just fine in the new location.  The archwire that runs from tooth to tooth is there to act as a guide for where your teeth should go.

Bear in mind that this happens very slowly, most people have braces on anywhere up to two years.   If you try and force your teeth to move too fast then you risk actually losing them.  Once your teeth reach the spot they are supposed to be in then the membrane and the bone will fill in to support them.  This whole process is referred to by orthodontists as remodeling.  It starts almost as soon as the braces are places on your teeth and once they reach the right spot it will take roughly 3 months for the bone and membranes to grow in.

The amount of time you have your braces on will depend on the condition of your teeth.  It won’t necessarily be the same length of time as other friends and family that already had braces on.  Everyone has different teeth placement and bone structure, so don’t be discouraged if you have braces on a little bit longer.

What is Orthodontics

What is Orthodontics?

What is Orthodontics?

The field of orthodontics is a specialty that deals with your tooth movements and the development of the face.  Orthodontists are there for patients who need to have their teeth moved.  The move could be purely for cosmetic reasons or their teeth may be so misaligned there are problems with speaking and eating.  There are a plethora of benefits that come with fixing your crooked teeth and they include fixing your bite, making it far easier to keep your teeth clean and it can improve your overall appearance.  A beautiful smile is a confident smile!  Before you start your orthodontic treatments you should have an idea of what to expect.

Getting Started

Once your own dentist has determined that you need the services of an orthodontist he will give you a referral and you will have an appointment with the orthodontist.  During the first appointment you will have a complete dental exam that will include x-rays, and molds of your teeth and bite.  They will discuss your dental and medical history in order to determine the course of treatment.

Conditions an Orthodontist Treats

There are a bunch of different conditions that may require you to see an orthodontist.  Overbites, buck teeth and crooked teeth can all be treated by an orthodontist.  The will also help those whose bottom teeth are sticking out too far, along with spacing between your teeth, braces can help push these teeth into alignment.  If you have crowding because your jaw is too small for your teeth then you will need to see an orthodontist as well.  Whether your issue is caused by your teeth or with your jaw it is the orthodontist who can help fix it.


An orthodontist can use a variety of devices to straighten your teeth, it could be a retainer, braces or palatal expanders.  They may also choose to do a specific procedures after looking at your xrays and examining your teeth.  Your orthodontist will choose the best option for your budget and condition.  However the most common treatment that orthodontists do are braces.  These will consist of wires, bands and brackets that are fixed to your teeth.  Most people have their braces tightened on a bi-weekly or monthly basis.  This helps to move your teeth into the right position.  There are also invisible braces that you can opt for along with clear aligners.  Invisible aligners can take less time than traditional braces but they will cost more.

Seeing an orthodontist for many people is about more than having a good smile.  Oftentimes it is the orthodontist who fixes problems with your jaw and your bite.