As an orthodontic patient with braces, when you hear “rubber bands,” it’s natural to feel a little apprehensive. Although they may take a while to get used to, they can speed up your treatment and make your life a lot easier in the long run! The Chrsitian Manley Orthodontics team wants to demystify the world of rubber bands by sharing how they can help improve your experience with braces. Let’s have a look at what these are and how Dr. Manley might use them during your treatment process.
What are orthodontic rubber bands?
Rubber bands are tiny elastic bands used in combination with braces to help move teeth into their proper alignment. Dr. Manley and his team at Christian Manley Orthodontics use rubber bands to adjust the bite and create more space for teeth to shift. Rubber bands come in various sizes, strengths, and colors to tailor your treatment plan to your specific needs (and style!).
Different types of rubber bands.
At Christian Manley Orthodontics, we use different types of rubber bands to help treat your orthodontic issues.
- Oties: These tiny rubber bands are the colorful bands you see around each bracket, which help the archwire apply pressure and move your teeth in the right direction.
- Power chains: Power chains are several rubber bands connected to each other and are often used to bring two teeth closer together or place additional pressure on a specific part of your jaw.
- Elastics: Also known as interarch rubber bands, these can correct a malocclusion (misaligned bite) and create more space for teeth to move. Dr. Manley will attach your elastics to tiny hooks on the upper and lower brackets of your teeth to gradually correct your bite over time.
How do rubber bands help with braces?
The most common use of rubber bands is for bite correction. By stretching the rubber bands across different parts of the mouth, Dr. Manley can correct an overbite or underbite by pulling your teeth in opposite directions and encouraging them to move into the correct position. In addition to bite correction, rubber bands can also help with the following:
- Spacing issues between teeth
- Closing gaps
- Creating a more even smile
Tips for using rubber bands:
The Christian Manley Orthodontics team wants your experience with braces to be as comfortable and successful as possible, so it’s essential to use your rubber bands correctly. Here are a few tips to help you:
- Remove your rubber bands when eating. Remember to remove your rubber bands before eating or brushing your teeth; otherwise, they can get stuck in the brackets.
- Change your rubber bands every day. This will help keep them effective and prevent them from stretching out too quickly. In general, you should discard your elastics after each instance when you remove them to eat or do other activities.
- Be patient. Initially, your rubber bands may cause soreness as your jaw gets used to responding to them. However, you will quickly get used to them, and the soreness will decrease.
- Replace your rubber bands as directed by Dr. Manley. He will determine when it’s time to replace your rubber bands with a stronger pair or switch to another type of band. Following his guidelines is key to successful results.
Supercharge your braces treatment with rubber bands!
We understand that rubber bands can be intimidating. But they can also provide drastic improvements in your alignment and oral health. Dr. Manley loves helping his patients feel comfortable with all aspects of their treatment, including their rubber bands!
If you have any questions about rubber bands for your braces, please don’t hesitate to contact our Sammamish or Issaquah office. We are always here to help you get the most out of your treatment!