How Do Braces Move My Teeth?

If you’re thinking about getting braces then you’ve probably wondered how exactly braces move your teeth into position in the first place.

Tooth and root movement is your body’s natural response to light pressure applied by braces over a period of time. So let’s take a look at the various appliance options for your orthodontic uses which will help move your teeth into proper alignment.

It starts with the brackets

Braces work by using brackets that are glued onto your teeth; these brackets have small slots, and that is where your orthodontist insert orthodontic wires.

These wire are attached with ties and modules.

It is the tension of the wire against the bracket that causes the teeth to move.

Wires and elastics

The arch wires are what actually do the work in shifting your teeth around over time.

These wires are held in place by small elastic or wire ties that fit around the brackets.

As time passes during your treatment, the bracket, wire, ties and chain apply gentle pressure on your teeth, which gradually shifts your teeth into the desired position.

Child's teeth with braces

Each of your teeth are different sizes and shapes, as are brackets, and each bracket is custom-made for the particular tooth shape and location in the mouth. 

When you first get your braces on, the first wire or two will typically be very flexible, but still strong enough to apply a constant force on your teeth.

As time passes during your treatment, these wires apply pressure on your teeth, which sets in motion the movement of your teeth into their desired positions.

Changing the wires

As your teeth straighten out over time, the Wilkinson Team will use progressively thicker and firmer wires to help move your teeth into their perfect position.

The Wilkinson Team will recommend an adjustment every 7 to 10 weeks.

Each appointment can vary slightly, depending on how your teeth have responded to your last adjustment. 

Sometimes your teeth will be ready to move up into a stronger wire, sometimes only a slight adjustment is required. 

As for rubber bands (also called elastics), a lot of patients may need to wear elastics or rubber bands at some point during their treatments.

These elastics typically go from one or more of the upper braces to one or more of the lower braces, and pull on your teeth and jaw to move them in the direction they need to move in order to achieve your optimal bite.

If you have any questions about wires, brackets, or elastics, or have any general questions about your treatment, please call either of our Gold Coast Orthodontics locations.

Leave a Reply