Ortho Dictionary

Choose a glossary:

 

Parts of Braces

Appliance
Anything an orthodontist attaches to your teeth or gives you to wear that moves your teeth or changes the shape of your jaw.
Archwire
The metal wire that acts as a track to guide your teeth as they move. It is changed ansd adjusted periodically throughout treatment as your teeth move to new positions.
Band
A metal ring that is cemented to your tooth and goes completely around it. Bands provide a way to attach brackets and appliances to your teeth.
Bond
The seal created by orthodontic cement that holds your appliances in place.
Bracket
A metal or ceramic part cemented (“bonded”) to your tooth to hold your archwire in place.
Coil Spring
A spring that fits between your brackets and over your archwire to open space between your teeth.
Elastic (Rubber Band)
A small rubber band that is hooked between different points on your appliance to provide pressure to move your teeth to a new position. Elastics must be worn 24/7 unmless advised less.
Elastic Tie
The tiny rubber band that fits around your bracket to hold the archwire in place. It comes in many colors.
Headgear
Headgear uses an external wire facebow to guide the growth of your face and jaw by gently by moving your upper teeth back. Force is applied by a spring-loaded neck strap or head strap. The straps have a safety release. To be effective headgear must be worn 12 at least hours a day
Headgear Tube
A round, hollow attachment on your back bands. The inner bow of your headgear fits into it.
Hook
A welded or removable arm to which elastics are attached.
Ligature
A thin wire that holds your archwire into your bracket.
Lip Bumper
An archwire attached to a molded piece of plastic. The lip bumper holds back the molars on your lower jaw to provide more space for your other teeth.
Mouthguard
A device that protects your mouth from injury when you participate in sports or rigorous activities.
Palatal Expander
A device that makes your upper jaw wider.
Retainer
An appliance that is worn after your braces are removed, it attaches to your upper and/or lower teeth to hold them in place. Some retainers are removable, while others are bonded to the tongue side of several teeth.
Separator or Spacer
A small rubber ring that creates space between your teeth before the bands are attached.
Tie Wire
A fine wire that is twisted around your bracket to hold the archwire in place.
Wax or silicone
Used to cover braces that are irritating your cheeks or lips.

Orthodontic Procedures

Banding
The process of fitting and cementing orthodontic bands to your teeth.
Bonding
The process of attaching brackets to your teeth using special orthodontic cement.
Cephalometric X-ray
An X-ray of your head that shows the relative positions and growth of the face, jaws, and teeth.
Consultation
A meeting with your orthodontist to discuss a treatment plan.
Debanding
The process of removing cemented orthodontic bands from your teeth.
Debonding
The process of removing cemented orthodontic brackets from your teeth.
Impressions
A model of your mouth made by biting into a soft material that sets like Jello to make a mold of your teeth for study models. to record the positions of your teeth. Now we use digital scans.
Invisalign®
An alternative to traditional braces, Invisalign straightens your teeth with a series of clear, custom-molded aligners. Invisalign can correct some, but not all, orthodontic problems.
Ligation
The process of tying an archwire to the brackets on your teeth with thin wires or tiny colored silicone elastics
Panoramic X-ray
An X-ray that rotates around your head to take pictures of your teeth, jaw, and other facial areas.
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