Elastics (Rubber Bands)
Elastics are small rubber bands that you attach to special hooks on your brackets. Elastics can also be worn with clear aligners by using precision cutouts in the aligners and buttons bonded to the teeth. Elastics help to pull the upper or lower arch either horizontally (front to back or side to side) or vertically (up and down) in order for the upper and lower teeth to fit together.
While most rubber bands are clear to make them as discreet as possible, we do offer multicolored elastics for fun!
A Forsus appliance consists of fixed springs that attach the upper set of braces to the lower set of braces. They help to move the arch forward or back to correct the bite. A Forsus appliance is used in place of headgear.
Headgear is an appliance that is worn in front of the face or behind the head. The purpose of headgear is to help move the upper arch or jaw forward or backward in order to correct a skeletal problem.
The Herbst appliance is designed to correct overbites. It moves the lower jaw forward and the upper molars backwards.
A palatal expander is an appliance that attaches to the upper teeth. It is used for patients whose upper jaw or arch is too narrow or crowded. An expander widens the upper jaw by small turns of a screw device. The turns on the expander are done within the first few visits to our Frisco orthodontic office. The appliance will then stay in for six months to allow the teeth to stabilize.
We use traditional Hawley retainers—with the wire in front of the teeth and the color in the roof of the mouth—for patients who still have baby teeth falling out and permanent teeth coming in. For most patients who have all of their permanent teeth, we use clear retainers that look like clear aligners.
Permanent retainers may also be bonded to the back of the lower front teeth to help keep them from crowding. They are also used behind the upper front teeth to help keep space closed. We always recommend using a clear retainer over permanent retainers to help hold all of the teeth that aren’t bonded to it in place.
Retainers should be worn 24/7 for three to six months after orthodontic treatment, then every night for life.