Orthodontists use more than just braces to straighten your teeth and align your jaw. You may also need elastics or springs to ensure every tooth is in the right spot. If you’ve been told that you’ll need to wear elastics for braces, here’s some information that can help clear up your questions. 

Who needs to wear orthodontic elastics?

Elastics can be used to correct a variety of issues with alignment.

  • Class I elastics are used to close the gap between teeth.
  • Class II elastics are used to correct an overbite, pulling the top teeth back and the bottom teeth forward.
  • Class III elastics are used to correct an underbite, pulling the bottom teeth back and the top teeth forward.

Types of Elastics for Braces

The rubber bands for braces come in several types depending on what you need. They can have light, medium, or heavy force, for closing larger or smaller gaps. They come in smaller or larger sizes for stretching across short or long distances. They are available in latex or synthetic material in case you have an allergy.

Can I eat with rubber bands on braces?

Most users can continue to eat while wearing the rubber bands. However, for some configurations, it may be easier to remove them while eating. Others may only be required to wear the elastics at night, so eating with them on won’t be a concern. Your orthodontist will be able to guide you on the proper way to wear your elastics.

How to put elastics on braces

Your orthodontist will show you the configuration they prefer for your elastics to improve your bite. These small rubber bands can be applied with your fingers and wrap around one bracket to the other. These brackets will have a hook on them to keep the elastics in place. When it’s time to change or take them out, you can do so with just your fingers. Eventually, you’ll get so used to the placement of the elastics and brackets that you won’t even need a mirror to apply them!

Why it’s important to wear your elastics

If your orthodontist has recommended that you wear elastics, it’s in your best interest to do so as instructed. These tiny rubber bands work to correct your bite and teeth alignment, as well as closing any gaps you may have. With proper alignment, chewing and talking will be less difficult, and you can even reduce the number of headaches or amount of jaw pain you have.

Orthodontic treatment is highly important, and not just for a beautiful smile but your oral health as well. If you’re considering orthodontic treatment or have questions about your elastics, get in touch with Wonder West Orthodontics today.