The fundamentals of braces aren’t too difficult to understand: the archwire runs through the brackets, which are cemented to the teeth. The archwire wants to run straight, and it exerts a force on the brackets – and consequently on the teeth – that pulls them into a straighter, more perfect alignment to match the archwire. That all makes sense. But what on earth do elastics, or the rubber bands we attach to your braces, do? Are rubber bands really good for anything else than flinging at your friends or holding together bunches of asparagus?
Extra Control for Jaw Correction
As it turns out, they’re critically important to many people’s treatment! While brace are highly effective at straightening the teeth, this is all they’re really capable of: straightening the alignment of the teeth along each dental arch. What they aren’t capable of – at least on their own – is altering the alignment of the jaws themselves. This is where elastics come in.
By attaching elastics to brackets and running them from one dental arch to the other, we can actually exert force on the jaws themselves, causing them to change their alignment. This is what lets us treat conditions like severe overbite, underbite, and crossbite by moving the jaws and altering the relationship of the upper and lower jaw. For many patients, elastics are a vital part of treatment and ensuring a healthy, functional bite and smile.
Contact Your Salt Lake City Orthodontic Specialists
We hope you’ve found this information helpful, and if you’d like to see elastics in action, we’d be thrilled to help. Orthodontic treatment is an investment in your best asset, and you’ll get to reap the rewards for years to come. Feel free to call us at 1-801-999-4431, reach out to us at our contact page, or use our convenient online form to schedule a complimentary consultation at any one of our Wasatch Front locations. We can’t wait to hear from you, and we’re excited to help you achieve a healthy, beautiful smile!