Glossary

 

Archwire
A wire engaged in orthodontic attachments, affixed to the crowns of two or more teeth and capable of causing or guiding tooth movement.


Band (orthodontic)
A thin metal ring, usually stainless steel, which serves to secure orthodontic attachments to a tooth. The band, with orthodontic attachments welded or soldered to it, is closely adapted to fit the contours of the tooth and then cemented into place.


Bracket
An orthodontic attachment that is secured to a tooth (either by bonding or banding) for the purpose of engaging an archwire. Brackets can be fabricated from metal, ceramic or plastic.


Ceramic Brackets
Crystalline, alumina, tooth-shade or clear synthetic sapphire brackets that are aesthetically more attractive than conventional metal attachments.


Coil Spring

Small spring placed around arch wire to either maintain or increase the space between teeth.


Color Tie

A color rubber band that secures the archwire to the bracket

Crowding
Dental malalignment caused by inadequate space for the teeth.


Debanding/Debonding
The removal of cemented orthodontic bands and brackets


Elastics (rubber bands)
These are used to move teeth in prescribed directions. Instructions will be given on how to wear them and how often. This is where the patient's involvement is extremely important, as it is up to him or her to take them on and off.  In order to have braces removed at scheduled date these elastics have to be worn according the doctors instructions otherwise deband/debond will be delayed.


Gingiva
The tissue that surrounds the teeth, consisting of a fibrous tissue that is continuous with the periodontal ligament and mucosal covering.


Lingual
Of or pertaining to the tongue. A term used to describe surfaces and directions toward the tongue.


Maxillary
Of or pertaining to the upper jaw. May be used to describe teeth, dental restorations, orthodontic appliances or facial structures.


Orthodontist

A dental specialist who has completed an advanced post-doctoral course, accredited by the American Dental Association, of at least two academic years in the special area of orthodontics.


Orthognathic Surgery
Surgery to alter relationships of teeth and/or supporting bones, usually accomplished in conjunction with orthodontic therapy. This is usually done when there is no further growth expected.


Overbite
Vertical overlapping of upper teeth over lower teeth, usually measured perpendicular to the occlusal plane


Oberjet
A horizontal overlap of the front teeth


Radiograph
A permanent image, performed digitally in our office, produced by ionizing radiation. Sometimes called an X-ray after the most common source of image-producing radiation.

Retainer
Any orthodontic appliance, fixed or removable, used to maintain the position of the teeth following corrective treatment.


Retention
The passive treatment period following active orthodontic correction during which retaining appliances may be used.