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How Do Braces Actually Work and Align Your Teeth?

Posted on October 3, 2023

family orthodontists

According to AAO, an estimated 3.9 million kids in the U.S. see an orthodontist. Family orthodontists can help provide your child with the right treatment they need to straighten their teeth and improve their dental health. But how exactly do braces work, and how are they able to align your teeth? Here, we’ll dive into how your family orthodontists use braces to straighten your child’s teeth.

How Are Braces Placed on Teeth?

Those who see family orthodontists for braces usually have one of these types of conditions: crooked teeth, crowded teeth, or a tooth gap. To gradually align the teeth, family orthodontists will bond brackets to the surface of the teeth using a very small amount of bonding adhesive. To ready the teeth for the brackets, your orthodontist will apply an etching liquid to the center of each tooth. After about 30 seconds, the liquid is rinsed off with water and dried. A primer is then placed on the teeth.

Once the teeth are ready to go, a resin composite is placed on the back of each bracket and the brackets are then placed individually on each tooth. This resin composite is similar to the material that’s used in fillings, but it’s used here to adhere the bracket to the tooth.

From there, your orthodontist will make sure that the brackets are all in the right place and properly centered on the tooth before the composite is hardened and set using a blue light. Now that the brackets have been properly set on the teeth, your orthodontist will place an arch wire between each bracket.

How Do Braces Work?

The wire between the brackets is what’s used to help gradually align the teeth by gently pulling them in a specific direction over time. Your orthodontist will place a steel tie, a thin metal wire, around the arch wire in specific brackets to push the arch wire in a certain direction. The arch wire will want to move back to its original position, and it’s this that will create a gentle, constant pressure on the teeth and move them into the proper position. There may be some discomfort when the wires are tightened, but it only lasts a day or two at the most and it can be managed with over-the-counter painkillers.

If you or your child are looking for family orthodontists in your area for braces, look no further than Dr. Bret Ortho. For more information about our orthodontic services or to schedule a consultation with us, give us a call today!

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