How Braces Work

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I love listening to podcasts, and one of my favorites to pass the time is "How Stuff Works." Ever heard of it? The "How Stuff Works" podcast explores and explains interesting topics, and today I'm going to do my own version--- "How Braces Work!"

Here's an interesting, quick explanation of how your braces are working to create a brand new smile:

To move teeth into the proper place, an orthodontist attaches braces, which generally consist of metal, plastic, or ceramic brackets and wires, to produce pressure on each tooth. This gentle force creates a slight pressure on the bone next to the root of the tooth. Eventually, this steady pressure dissolves the bone, making space for the tooth to move a microscopic distance.

New bone grows in the now empty space on the other side of the tooth where there is no pressure. This bone helps stabilize the tooth in its new position.

Braces are adjusted many times during treatment to maintain the directional pressure required to continue the movement of the teeth. The amount of supporting bone dictates the extent to which the teeth can be moved.

There are differences in each orthodontic patient's problem and prescribed treatment; this is the reason no two treatments may be the same or continue for the same length of time. Treatment usually takes 12-30 months but may last longer depending on the severity of the problem, the age of the patient and the degree of movement possible.


I hope you learned some new insights on what is going on behind the scenes as your smile is being transformed!

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