At our office, our #1 goal is to give our patients the smile they rightfully deserve. There are many different parts to orthodontic treatment and one part may be requiring you to wear elastics or "rubber bands". These rubber bands need to be worn 24/7 for 7 days a week except for when you are eating and brushing your teeth. Many people ask, "Why do I need to wear them? What do they do?"
Rubber bands are used for bite change and jaw alignment. First, we align your teeth using the braces. We close most of the spaces and get rid of most of the crowding. Next, we need your help to move your bite. It is critical to align your bite because your teeth are more prone to relapse (teeth moving after treatment) if your jaw and bite is not perfect. There are also many different ways to wear these elastics, so please make sure you have the correct positioning! If you have any questions about your elastics, please ask an assistant or Dr. Beth. We are happy to help you understand why we use them and how to place them correctly. We have many tricks to make it easier!
There are also a couple of myths about rubber bands that should be talked about.
1.) "I don't have to wear my elastics during the day. I can just wear two at night time and it will catch up."
WRONG! Elastics move your teeth at a slow and continuous pace. If you do this, it could actually not change your bite at all. The force behind your elastics is carefully determined due to the arch wire you have. If you double the force it could potentially cause harm to your teeth.
2.) "I only have to wear my rubber bands when my orthodontic appointment is close and my bite will be fine."
WRONG AGAIN! Like it was previously mentioned, bite change is a slow and continuous movement and not wearing your elastics 24/7 will not change your bite. Bite movement is also a measurement and we are able to tell if compliance is an issue.
We want all of our patients to have the perfect smile they deserve. Everyone deserves a beautiful smile and we are here to help! A smile is the most beautiful curve on the human body. :-)