Orthodontic Appliances

TADs | Headgear | Quad Helix | Hyrax | Lower Lingual Arch | Nance Appliance | Pendulum Appliance | Thumb/Finger Appliance


TADs

One of the many important advances in orthodontics has been the development of temporary anchorage devices, or TADs. Made of a bio-compatible titanium alloy, TADs are miniscrew anchors which are inserted into specific places in the mouth to be used as a fixed point from which teeth can move. Before TADs, orthodontists who wanted to move some teeth while keeping others still, or to achieve orthodontic movement in a mouth with missing teeth, had to rely on headgear for their fixed point. But TADs now provide an option for that fixed point that is smaller, more discrete, more efficient and requires significantly less work for the patient.

Temporary anchorage devices may not be recommended for everyone, and in fact, anchorage devices at all may not be needed in all cases. Contact us if you’d like to know more about TADs and how they can potentially prevent you from needing orthodontic headgear.

Headgear

Headgear is often used to correct an excessive overbite. This is done by placing pressure against the upper teeth and jaw, which would hold the teeth in position or help move them into better positions. The severity of the problem determines the length of time headgear needs to be worn. The key to success with your headgear appliance is consistency. Headgear must be worn a certain number of hours per day, and if not, it must be made up the following day.

Headgear should never be worn while playing sports and should also be removed while eating or brushing your teeth.

Quad Helix

The Quad Helix is a fixed orthodontic appliance used for upper arch expansion. Bands are cemented to your back molars to keep the appliance in place while four helix springs help widen the arch. This appliance is ideal for patients with crowding in the upper arch or to correct a posterior crossbite..

It is important to maintain a good oral hygiene regimen while wearing the Quad Helix. Patients should brush around and under the appliance and also floss and rinse thoroughly to remove any food particles.

Hyrax

The Hyrax is a bonded appliance used to expand the upper jaw to correct crossbites and increase upper arch length.

The Hyrax appliance widens the upper jaw one-fourth millimeter per turn, taking about two months to get the total amount of width desired. After this period, we will stabilize the Hyrax for up to three months at which point a retainer will be used to maintain the upper jaw width.

Lower Lingual Arch

LingualA Lower Lingual Arch acts as a space maintainer to keep the molars from drifting forward, and prevent them from blocking the space where permanent teeth will eventually erupt. This appliance is commonly used in cases of premature loss of baby tooth or when the lower teeth of a growing child are slightly crowded and no permanent teeth are extracted to correct the problem.

The duration of wear varies. We will monitor the eruption of new teeth and make adjustments. Generally, the Lower Lingual Arch is removed following the eruption of all the permanent teeth.

Nance Appliance

NanceThe Nance Appliance is used to prevent upper molars from rotating or moving forward after you’ve worn a headgear, a pendulum appliance or any other appliance to move your molars back. The appliance is made of two bands that are cemented onto the first molars and a wire spans the roof of the mouth from one molar to the other. An acrylic pad or “button” covers the wire that touches the roof of your mouth directly behind your front teeth.

Patients should always brush around the bands daily. Do not eat sticky, chewy candy as it can loosen your appliance.

Pendulum Appliance

PendulumThe Pendulum Appliance is used to correct class II malocclusions by distalizing upper molars. It’s used to correct the patient’s bite on the side of their mouth.

The Pendulum Appliance consists of a plastic “button” that touches the roof of the mouth and resilient wire springs that act in a broad swinging arc to move the molars back. The appliance uses the roof of the mouth as an anchor to move the molars back into their correct positions. Patients usually wear this appliance for 6 months.

Thumb/Finger Appliance

Sucking is a natural reflex that relaxes and comforts babies and toddlers. Children usually cease thumb sucking when the permanent front teeth are ready to erupt. Typically, children stop between the ages of 2 and 4 years. Thumb sucking that persists beyond the eruption of primary teeth can cause improper growth of the mouth and misalignment of the teeth. If you notice prolonged and/or vigorous thumb sucking behavior in your child, talk to your dentist.

One solution to thumb sucking is an appliance called a "fixed palatal crib." This appliance is put on the child's upper teeth by an orthodontist.

Dr. William DeVries

  • Jenison - 597 Baldwin Dr., PO Box 47, Jenison, MI 49429 Phone: 616-457-4220 Fax: 616-457-4024
  • Byron Center - 2347 84th St. S.W., PO Box 528, Byron Center, MI 49315 Phone: 616-878-5960

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