The Purpose of Rubber Bands:
Rubber bands (aka elastics) allow for upper and lower teeth to move into alignment. Sometimes it is not possible to adjust only the wires in order to cause the teeth to move as they should. The elastics are connected to specific teeth to move them in a planned direction.
How to Wear Elastics:
Elastics are to be to worn 24-HOURS PER DAY unless otherwise instructed. Elastics should only be taken out to eat or while brushing and flossing your teeth. Consistent elastic wear is one of the most critical determinants of whether treatment is completed on time.
Change your elastics for new ones at least twice a day. Often the best routine for changing elastics is just before you go to bed and changed again when you wake up in the morning. The reason elastics must be changed twice a day is because they lose their effectiveness over a short period of time.
At your appointment you will be given a special size and shown a pattern of elastics to be worn. Below are images and descriptions of the various elastic patterns your may be instructed to wear.
What to Expect:
Wearing elastics will initially make your teeth sore. This soreness will go away with continuous wear after a couple of days. Giving your teeth a “break” from the elastics will only make them feel sore again the next time you put them on and set you back in treatment.
Tips for Success:
- If you have questions about how to wear your elastics please give our office a call as soon as possible.
- Always carry a pack of elastics in your pocket so you will always have them wherever you go
- Part-time wear will not work in correcting the bite.
- If you break or loose an elastic, replace both elastics immediately.
- If an elastic hook breaks or comes loose, call us immediately so that we can fix the problem.
- If you are running low on elastics be sure to mention you need more at your next appointment. Should you run out of elastics before your next appointment please give the office a call and we will be happy to mail you more.
Our number one goal is to give you the best smile possible in the shortest period of time as possible. Your cooperation in wearing your elastics as instructed will help achieve this goal. Not wearing elastics can result in treatment taking longer than expected and may affect treatment results.
Class 2 Elastics:
Are worn from the Upper canine bracket to the Lower first molar band. In other words from the Upper in the front to the Lower in the back.
Class 3 Elastics:
Are worn from the Lower canine bracket to the Upper first molar band. In other words from the Upper in the back to the Lower in the front.
Class 2 Check Elastics:
Are worn from the Lower first molar band up around the Upper Canine bracket and then back down to the Lower canine bracket. It will look like an upside-down check.
Class 3 Check Elastics:
Are worn from the Upper first molar band down around the Lower canine bracket and then back up to the Upper canine bracket. It will look like an up facing check.
Class 2 Box Elastics:
Are worn from the Upper canine and Upper first pre-molar to the Lower first pre-molar and Lower second pre-molar. The elastic will form a forward slanted box in appearance.
Class 3 Box Elastics:
Are worn from the Upper canine and Upper first pre-molar to the Lower canine and the Lower first pre-molar. The elastic will form a backward slanted box in appearance.
Are worn from the Lower canine to up around the Upper canine and then back to the Lower first pre-molar.
Are worn from the Upper Canine to the Lower canine on the opposite side. They can be worn in one of two ways: 1) Upper left canine to Lower right canine 2) Upper right canine to the Lower left canine. This elastic will run from one side of your mouth to the other side crossing your midline.
Anterior Box Elastics:
Are worn from both the Upper left and Upper right canine teeth down around both the Lower left and Lower right canine teeth.
Remember, good elastic wear is a major key to the removal of your braces.
It is up to you!