Orthodontic Lingo

Orthodontic Braces Information - Kansas City - Weber Orthodontics

Frequently, we receive phone calls about a “broken orthodontic wire” or a “bracket that does not feel right”. Do you know what the materials that makes up your braces are? Or what they are called or do? Chances are, probably not! That is why we created this guide sheet so you know what exactly is causing the problem…

  1. Archwire: This is the main wire that you see; its job is to guide the teeth along. It is changed throughout treatment as the teeth move into new positions.
  2. Bracket: A small attachment that holds the archwire in place. It can either be cemented directly to the tooth or onto a band.
  3. Band: A thin metal ring that is fitted around the tooth and cemented in place so that the brackets can attach to the tooth.
  4. Elastic Tie: A tiny colored rubber band that holds the archwire in place, it wraps around the bracket.  This created the colors on the braces.
  5. Coil Spring: This opens space between teeth by fitting between brackets and over the archwire.
  6. Tie Wire: Fine wire that twists around the bracket to hold the archwire in place (also known as a twisty tie).
  7. Hook: Removable arm that rubber bands are attached to.
  8. Rubber Bands (Elastics): These provide pressure to move the teeth, which is why they are so important to wear! They are hooked between different points on the braces.
  9. Loop in Archwire: Many archwires do not have a loop. If they do have a loop, it is used to close space left by an extraction.
  10. Headgear Tube: This is where the inner bow of headgear fits into. It is a hollow, round attachment on the back of the bands.

Questions, concerns, or problems? Please call us at (816) 746-1200!

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