In orthodontia, we call them elastics, but most patients refer to them as rubber bands. These tiny circular bands are used with braces to move teeth with more force than we can get with braces alone.
The elastic bands attach to little hooks on specific brackets. We counsel patients and caregivers how they are to be used, as the direction of attachment is unique to the wearer, as is the amount and length of time they should be worn.
Keeping up with regular orthodontic appointments is crucial, as we use different sizes and strengths of bands throughout the course of treatment. For example, as the teeth get closer to where we want them, we will use smaller bands.
It’s recommended that elastics come out for eating and brushing, then replaced with new ones afterward. If your child is wearing them, don’t be surprised to find them all over the house. Remind your child to throw away used ones, as they could be a danger to pets and small children.
Typically, elastics need to be changed several times a day, which is why we give patients generous amounts. If you happen to run out, don’t wait until your next appointment: call us and we’ll arrange to get you more — we don’t want to lose the progress we’ve made in moving teeth.
Source: American Association of Orthodontics
This smile is brought to you by:
Wade L. Haslam, DMD, PC