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Heads up on headgear

When correcting jaw and bite alignment, headgear is often used in orthodontics.

Headgear is considered an external “appliance,” as we call them, that is worn partially outside the mouth, oftentimes with a U-shaped metal piece across the face, connected with a series of straps. Most of the time, this tool is used to gently pull — over the course of several months — a child’s jaw to correct an under or overbite.

Headgear is only effective in growing jaws, which is why you don’t see them on adults. When we recommend headgear, the goal is to avoid surgery later in life. We tell patients that if they wear their headgear from early evening and throughout the night, they’ve met the necessary 12 to 14 hours of daily wear that is needed to achieve the desired result.

While we don’t use headgear as often as we did decades ago, there

is still a use for it today to help your child’s long-term oral health.


This smile is brought to you by:

Wade L. Haslam, DMD, PC

2657 NW Rolling Green Drive Corvallis | 


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