A Comprehensive Guide to Braces Terminology

Braces Terminology

When embarking on your orthodontic journey, understanding the braces terminology and the cost of braces can be immensely helpful in making informed decisions about your treatment. From braces components to tooth movement techniques, this guide will break down essential braces-related terms to ensure you’re well-equipped to communicate with your orthodontist and navigate your orthodontic treatment with confidence.

Braces Components and Types

Brace: A device affixed to your teeth that facilitates tooth movement during orthodontic treatment.

Bracket: A small, square or rectangular attachment that’s bonded to the front surface of a tooth, providing an anchor point for orthodontic wires.

Orthodontic Band: A metal ring that wraps around a tooth to provide support for brackets, tubes, and other orthodontic attachments.

Arch Wire: A wire that runs through the brackets and guides the movement of your teeth during treatment.

Orthodontic Attachment: A term used to describe various devices that help control tooth movement, including brackets and bands.

Orthodontic Wire: The arch wire that connects brackets and guides tooth movement to achieve the desired alignment.

Elastics: Small rubber bands that are used to apply additional force and adjust tooth positioning.

Orthodontic Techniques and Tooth Movement

Individual Tooth Movement: The process of changing the position of a single tooth to achieve optimal alignment within the dental arch.

Tooth Surface: The specific area of a tooth that comes in contact with brackets, wires, and other orthodontic components.

Tooth Movement: The gradual repositioning of teeth to correct misalignment, crowding, or spacing issues.

Crowded Teeth: Teeth that are positioned too closely together, often requiring orthodontic therapy to create proper spacing.

Impacted Tooth: A tooth that has not erupted or emerged from the gum line as expected, often requiring special orthodontic procedures.

Tooth Decay: The breakdown of tooth enamel due to bacterial activity, a concern that needs careful attention during orthodontic treatment.

Orthodontic Procedures and Techniques

Orthodontic Cement: A special adhesive used to attach brackets and bands to the surface of the teeth.

Cemented Orthodontic Brackets: Brackets that are affixed to teeth using orthodontic cement.

Palatal Expander: An orthodontic appliance that is used to widen the upper jaw to create more space for teeth.

Headgear Tube: A metal attachment on braces used to anchor headgear or other orthodontic appliances.

Types of Braces

Traditional Braces: Also known as metal braces, these are the most common type of braces and use brackets, bands, and wires to align teeth.

Clear Aligners: A series of transparent, removable trays that gradually shift teeth into alignment.

Metal Braces: Traditional braces made of metal brackets and wires.

Navigating the world of braces can be made easier with a solid understanding of the terminology involved. From brackets and wires to tooth movement techniques, you now have a comprehensive orthodontic dictionary to aid your conversations with orthodontists and your comprehension of your treatment. With this knowledge, you’re better equipped to embark on your orthodontic journey and achieve the smile you’ve always wanted. Remember, your O’Fallon orthodontist is your greatest resource for clarifying any term or concept that might arise during your treatment.


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