Hi Everyone!! Dr. Karpac here again….:)
When you get braces, you’re essentially putting you or your loved one in the right direction towards having a beautiful smile for a lifetime. Anyone can see the overall importance of the brackets and wires involved with braces, but understanding the purposes behind rubber bands is sometimes difficult for kids to fully grasp.
The purpose of your orthodontic treatment goes much further than just a visibly aesthetic smile, and one underlying purpose is having a properly aligned bite. My team is constantly diagnosing and treating patients with different kinds of bite problems, including the following:
Overjet: This occurs when a patient’s upper front teeth protrude a bit too far forward past their bottom teeth
Underbite: This occurs when the bottom teeth extend out in front of the top teeth
Crossbite: This occurs when one or multiple teeth have erupted in an improper position, a common example being teeth in the back of the mouth in the upper arch setting inside the lower teeth.
Open bite: This occurs when a patient’s upper and lower front teeth aren’t touching when they bite down.
There are a lot of issues that can occur in an individual’s future if their bite problems aren’t adequately fixed. Someone could be facing things like long-term headaches, TMJ disorder, jaw pains and damaged teeth if they don’t get orthodontic treatment. This is exactly why it’s so crucial for our team to focus in on a patient’s bite during treatment, and rubbers bands just so happen to be one of the most effective ways to help patients create a better, more sustainable bite.
We use rubber bands to help your teeth to gradually move into an optimal positioning, and we’ll put tiny hooks on specific brackets in order to help correct any patient’s unique type of malocclusion. What’s fascinating is that when the rubber bands are placed just right within the brackets, they provide the perfect amount of force to slightly move a patient’s teeth in a way that wearing braces alone simply can’t.
If I feel it’s necessary for you or your child to wear rubber bands, then it will inevitably be a very important aspect of your entire orthodontic treatment. It’s the patient’s job to make sure they’re attaching their rubber bands on a daily basis, and in the correct position, which can sometimes be a lot easier said than done!
How long should the rubber bands stay in?
There’s a good likelihood that you’ll need to wear your rubber bands 24 hours each day, and this is because your rubber bands will be most effective while you’re out and about during your daily routine.
Of course there are extenuating circumstances with this, and we may advise you to remove your rubber bands while eating and brushing. We also may advise that you wear your rubber bands only while sleeping, but it really is a case-by-case scenario in terms of recommended wearing habits.
Can you wear the same rubber bands for several days at a time?
This is simply not a good idea. Your rubber bands have a specific amount of strength to them, so when you wear them for a couple days a time they’ll get too stretched out and won’t provide the necessary pressure that you’ll need to efficiently move your teeth.
Certain bands may have varying longevity requirements, and I will keep you posted on how long is too long for your specific type of rubber bands.
Are two rubber bands more efficient than one rubber band?
No! Your rubber bands are uniquely designed for your specific treatment requirements, so too much pressure on your teeth can actually do more harm than good. It’s always recommended to keep up with your provided schedule in terms of wearing and replacing your rubber bands, so your treatment stays on course.
Rubber bands truly are an integral part of orthodontic treatment because they ensure healthy, functional bites. It may seem a little overwhelming at first when it comes to keeping up with your rubber band routines, but we’ll always be here to help you with any support or information you need to keep your treatment on the right track.
If you’ve run out of rubber bands please call our office and I will get you more!!!!
For more information feel free to contact us and we’ll be happy to answer your questions.