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Parts and Types of Braces


Orthodontic separators are appliances used to create space between the teeth for the orthodontist to fit a molar band or other device. Commonly referred to as spacers, these appliances are made of elastic and are placed between the teeth for a period of one to two weeks.



The most well-known orthodontic device is of course braces. Traditional wire and bracket braces have a long standing history of success, and improvements are routinely made to the devices.

For traditional braces, the metal brackets are individually attached to the teeth using a strong adhesive, and then an arch wire is run between the brackets. The archwire is then secured to the bracket using an elastic ligature. The braces then use light, continuous forces to gently move the teeth into the desired position over time.




Many patients seeking orthodontic care are in need of an adjustment to their bite. Wearing elastics (or rubber bands) improves the fit of your upper and lower teeth. Wear rubber bands as instructed, and remember that the rubber bands work far more efficiently if they’re worn as prescribed.



Expanders are used to widen your upper jaw to correct a width issue or gain space for tooth eruption.  Dr. Bao will instruct you how and when to adjust your expander. Once the desired expansion has been achieved, you will wear the appliance for several months to solidify the expansion and to prevent relapse.



Invisalign is a series of invisible, removable, and comfortable trays that straighten your teeth like braces. Not only are the aligners invisible, they are removable, so you can eat and drink what you want while in treatment, plus brushing and flossing are less of a hassle. The aligners are comfortable and have no metal to cause mouth abrasions during treatment. Typically the aligners will be swapped out for a new set every two weeks or so. Over time, the aligners gently guide misaligned teeth into the desired position.

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