The purpose of orthodontic treatment, specifically braces, is to straighten your smile and improve overall oral health. To achieve these results, braces are made up of several parts that all work together. Your local orthodontist near Montebello, Dr. Parsa, has put together a detailed breakdown of the parts used to make up braces. 

Brackets Are Attached to the Teeth

Brackets are the foundation onto which the other components of braces are secured. Typically made of stainless steel, the small squares are affixed to the sides of teeth using a strong bonding agent that goes directly on a tooth’s enamel. Most of the teeth that are being repositioned get a bracket attached, with the exception of molars. In this case, bands might be used instead, serving the same purpose as brackets. The difference is that bands, while still secured by a dental bond, wrap all the way around the tooth. 

Because stainless steel is a highly visible option, some patients choose clear braces in Montebello as an alternative. Made of tooth-colored ceramic, this option for braces is often preferred by older teens and adults. 

Archwire Connects Brackets

The archwire is as it sounds – it’s the metal wire that attaches to the brackets and bands and connects all of the teeth. There are typically two archwires used during treatment, one for the upper teeth, and one for the lower teeth. 

The archwire is essentially the most important component of braces, as the adjustments made to an archwire are how braces actually reposition the teeth. When adjustments are made to the wire, it places a strain on the adjacent teeths’ brackets or bands, sliding or shifting the teeth in the desired direction.

Ligatures Secure the Archwire in Place

Lastly, ligatures are the more fun component of braces. They are used to secure the archwire to the brackets or bands, so the wire doesn’t move and is firmly affixed to the tooth for repositioning. Most come as single plastic ligatures, but in some cases, there may be connected elastic ligatures. They come in almost any color you could want and are replaced during most appointments, so you can regularly select a different color scheme. 

At My LA Braces, our experts are always ready to help you assess your treatment options, plus provide you with everything you need to know to make an informed decision. We take a consultative approach to treatment, which means you’ll be involved in the decision-making process from the start. Our top priority is to ensure you’re comfortable with every aspect of treatment before beginning. If you’re in need of orthodontic treatment, then contact our office today at 323.522.2683 to schedule your free consultation.