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General Information

11. How is orthodontic treatment accomplished?

Braces DiagramCustom-made orthodontic appliances, or braces, are specially prescribed and designed according to the problem being treated. They may be fixed (cemented and/or bonded) to the teeth, or removable. Braces may be made of metal (stainless steel), ceramic, or plastic. By placing constant, gentle forces in a carefully controlled direction with special wires, braces precisely move the teeth through the supporting bone to a new, more desirable position. 

Orthopedic appliances, also known as growth modification appliances, use carefully directed forces to guide the growth and development of the jaws in children and adolescents. Growth modification appliances include expansion appliances, Twin Blocks, Bionators, Frankel appliances, and headgear. For example, an upper jaw expansion appliance can dramatically widen a narrow upper jaw in a matter of months to correct crossbites and provide extra room for crowded teeth.      

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