Orthodontic Appliances

What Are Orthodontic Appliances Used For?

There are two main types of orthodontic appliances: removable and fixed. Orthodontic appliances are used when comprehensive metal or ceramic brackets are not required due to individual patient requirement and needs.

For example maxillary (upper jaw) expansion and growth modification (orthopaedic treatment) can be achieved more effectively with orthodontic appliances.

Orthodontic Appliances (fixed appliance) at Blackburn Orthodontics

Fixed Orthodontic Appliances

  • Expanders
    • Quad helix, RME and Porter appliance.
    • Used to correct cross-bites and expand the maxilla (upper jaw).
    • Most effective and commonly used for expansion by Dr. David.

  • Temporary anchorage device (TAD) borne appliances
    • Customised appliances that are fixed into the mouth for very complex tooth movements that standard braces or clear aligners alone cannot correct.

  • Space maintainers
    • Sometimes a baby tooth is lost early and we need to keep the space open, otherwise the adult tooth underneath will not have enough room to erupt through.
    • A space maintainer is an appliance used to keep this space open.
    • If the space is not kept open, then the adult tooth will not have room to fit in the mouth, and may need to be extracted, or room made orthodontically to get it to fit (can make treatment more complex and longer if so).

Removable Orthodontic Appliances

  • Upper removable appliance (URA) or plate
    • used to correct a single/small number of teeth by tipping them.
    • used to prevent attrition and wear for patients that grind their teeth at night (bruxism).
    • used to help with deep bite correction prior to full comprehensive braces.

  • Removable Expander
    • Can be used to expand the maxilla to create space for crowded anterior teeth.
    • More gentle, but will take longer when compared to fixed expanders.

  • Functional appliances (Twin Block, reverse pull head-gear)
    • Used for orthopaedic growth modification treatment (eg. Class II correction).
    • These appliances are used during the pubertal growth spurt to reduce the complexity of treatment later on and to reduce the need for orthognathic surgery.

  • Space maintainers
    • Removable plates
    • Need to be worn. If not, it will not work or hold the space as intended to.
Orthodontic Appliances (removable appliance) at Blackburn Orthodontics