How Do Braces Move Teeth

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Orthodontist In London Waterloo | Whites Dental
orthodontist in london waterloo | Whites Dental

Orthodontic Braces in London

Millions of people around the world have used orthodontic braces to straighten their teeth and improve their smile. Braces used to once be the sole preserve of teenage patients, however, that’s no longer the case. Braces treatments are used increasingly by adults of all ages to improve and straighten their smile. At Whites Dental, we will go so far as to say, a vast majority of our brace patients are adults over the age of 25. Whether you are a teenager looking to improve your smile or an adult looking to get your teeth straightened, you can take comfort from the fact that at Whites Dental, we have brace options for every need and taste.

If you have an interest in straightening your teeth, it will be helpful to first understand the science behind orthodontic braces and how they move teeth. However, before we get to that, we should first briefly talk about the key components of brace treatment. Braces have lots of parts to them, however, the three key components are – brackets, the arch wires, and O-rings.

how do orthodontic braces move teeth orthodontist in london waterloo | Whites Dental

These three key components work together to gently apply pressure to the teeth to enable them to move from their existing position to their new straight positions over the course of the orthodontic treatment. Every so often, your orthodontist may perhaps use rubber bands in order to apply a bit of extra force to move teeth in a particular direction.

How Do Orthodontic Braces Move Teeth

Now that you have a better understanding of the key components of braces, let’s discuss how they move your teeth.

Moving teeth through bone (bone remodelling) – In order to better understand how orthodontic braces work, it’s useful to have a bit of knowledge of how your teeth are actually constructed. Each tooth is surrounded by gum tissue (also called gingiva) at the top; the bottom portion of your tooth is enclosed in membrane called a periodontal membrane. This periodontal membrane is also sometimes called the periodontal ligament or PDL for short. The alveolar bone lies adjacent it. Once you have orthodontic braces placed on your teeth, the braces start to apply pressure on your teeth in order to move them.

As a result, the periodontal membrane stretches on one side and gets compressed on the other, causing the tooth to loosen a little. This in turn causes new bone to grow in order to support the tooth. This process is called bone remodeling, and this is where the magic with braces happens.

To get technical, the bone remodeling process is a biomechanical process. This means that the bones get stronger in response to the constant load-bearing effect of the orthodontic braces.

The force behind teeth movement – The orthodontic brackets and arch-wires are very good at providing the pressure and force your teeth need to enable them to move to their new straight positions. An arch-wire is usually made from materials that get activated by body heat to increase its level of stiffness, even as it struggles to retain its normal shape. At Whites Dental, we initially use a wire called a twist wire; the twist wire is like a small metal cable that wants to remain straight. When the twist wire is placed on the teeth, the wire gets activated by the heat in your mouth. Once you are a bit further into your treatment, we will replace the twist wire with a wire that’s a little more flexible. This new wire is typically made of nickel-titanium alloy. This new nickel-titanium wire is also activated by the heat in your mouth, causing it to stiffen in the process. Once the orthodontic brackets are attached to the front surface of the teeth and tied to the arch-wire, this then completes the pressure and force transmission to your teeth, enabling them to gradually move to their new positions.

orthodontic braces Invisalign london waterloo | Whites Dental

Once the load related to the braces is removed, the bones go back to their pre-treatment levels of inactivity thanks to the collection of osteoblasts and osteoclasts cells that make up our bones. Each of your teeth is socketed in bone tissue. For the upper teeth, the bone is called the maxilla; for the lower teeth, the bone is called the mandible. The periodontal ligament acts as a kind of messenger between the tooth and its surrounding bony socket. Pressure between the periodontal ligament and bone creates osteoclasts cells, then breaks down the bone in order to restore the regular spacing between the teeth and the bone. Corresponding tension on the periodontal ligament behind the movement causes the bone to create osteoblasts cells, essentially building new bone tissue to fill the difference. This once again restores the regular spacing between the teeth and bone.

Whether you are thinking of getting braces or are already undergoing brace treatment, the Whites Dental orthodontics team is here to support you in your journey to a straighter smile.

Our team will always be happy to answer any concerns or questions you may have about your orthodontic brace treatment. For further information on orthodontic braces and how they can help straighten your smile, please visit our Orthodontic homepage

At Whites Dental, we are passionate about providing every single patient with the best orthodontic experience possible. Our team is committed to help create a straighter smile for you with braces. We provide a full range of brace treatments such as Damon braces, traditional metal braces, fixed ceramic braces, Lingual braces and Six Month Smiles. We are conveniently based in London Waterloo, right across the road from Southwark tube. We are also a short walk from London Bridge, Southbank, Borough Market and Elephant and Castle.

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