Choose a glossary:
Parts of Braces
- Anything your orthodontist attaches to your teeth that moves your teeth or changes the shape of your jaw.
- The metal wire that acts as a track to guide your teeth as they move. It is changed periodically throughout treatment as your teeth move to new positions.
- A metal ring that is cemented to your tooth that goes completely around it. Bands provide a way to attach brackets to your teeth.
- The seal created by orthodontic cement that holds your appliances in place.
- A metal or ceramic part cemented (“bonded”) to your tooth that holds your archwire in place.
- Coil Spring
- A spring that fits between your brackets and over your archwire to open space between your teeth.
- Elastic (Rubber Band)
- A small rubber band that is hooked between different points on your appliance to provide pressure to move your teeth to a new position.
- Elastic Tie
- The tiny rubber band that fits around your bracket to hold the archwire in place. They come in a variety of colors.
- Headgear uses an external wire apparatus known as a facebow to guide the growth of your face and jaw gently by moving your teeth into proper position. The force is applied to the facebow by a spring-loaded neck strap or head strap. The straps have a safety release that disconnects if the facebow is pulled or snagged.
- Headgear Tube
- A round, hollow attachment on your back bands. The inner bow of your headgear fits into it.
- A welded or removable arm to which elastics are attached.
- A thin wire that holds your archwire into your bracket.
- Lip Bumper
- A lip bumper is an archwire attached to a molded piece of plastic. The lip bumper holds back the molars on your lower jaw to provide more space for your other teeth.
- A device that protects your mouth from injury when you participate in sports or rigorous activities.
- Palatal Expander
- A device that makes your upper jaw wider.
- An appliance that is worn after your braces are removed, the retainer attaches to your upper and/or lower teeth to hold them in place. Some retainers are removable, while others are bonded to the tongue side of several teeth.
- Separator or Spacer
- A small rubber ring that creates space between your teeth before the bands are attached.
- Tie Wire
- A fine wire that is twisted around your bracket to hold the archwire in place.
- Wax is used to stop your braces from irritating your lips.
- The process of fitting and cementing orthodontic bands to your teeth.
- The process of attaching brackets to your teeth using special orthodontic cement.
- Cephalometric X-ray
- An X-ray of your head that shows the relative positions and growth of the face, jaws, and teeth.
- A meeting with your orthodontist to discuss a treatment plan.
- The process of removing cemented orthodontic bands from your teeth.
- The process of removing cemented orthodontic brackets from your teeth.
- A model of your mouth made by biting into a soft material that hardens into a mold of your teeth. Your orthodontist will use these impressions to prepare your treatment plan.
- An alternative to traditional braces, Invisalign straightens your teeth with a series of clear, custom-molded aligners. Invisalign can correct some, but not all, orthodontic problems.
- The process of attaching an archwire to the brackets on your teeth.
- Panoramic X-ray
- An X-ray that rotates around your head to take pictures of your teeth, jaw, and other facial areas.
“I am so happy I chose Lippitz Orthodontics to do my braces. Dr. Lippitz is wonderful and the staff is terrific.”— Roy M.
“The entire staff rock and are extremely understanding of our children’s needs. Dr. Stefen is truly amazing…thank you!!”— Noah H.
“That appointment was wonderful! My son - who is high-functioning autistic and has a hard time sitting still and was apprehensive about visiting in the first place because he didn’t know what would happen – felt very at ease. He was made to feel comfortable!”— Devon M.
“I originally had my braces put on in 1983 by Dr. Herbert Lippitz and he was outstanding over all the years until I got them off in 1989. My most recent visit with Dr. Stefen Lippitz was equally outstanding and maybe better. I give Dr. Stefen 5 Stars!!!!”— Henry M.
“How great the staff from Dr. Lippitz to the front desk, everyone is so friendly and caring. They make this process much easier for my daughter and I. We appreciate it so much!”— Lydia P.
“Everyone was so welcoming. They really took the time to listen and explain everything to me. I had to bring my children and wasn’t sure how I would get through my appointment with both of them, but the staff jumped right in to help. I love the atmosphere here.”— Sarah W.
“Everyone clearly loves working there and are very welcoming. Dr. Lippitz always clearly explains what is need.”— Joh R.
“Always a pleasant experience…Dr. Lippitz is such a nice, friendly guy. Always get in on time, too!”— Sam W.
“Everytime I have been to your office on Western Ave. every staff member has been friendly, happy and extremely courteous. Makes me wonder what you guys are doing over there! LOL!! The great service makes me forget about the wires I have on my teeth.”— Cesar G.
“Fast and helpful – willing to take the time to schedule at our earliest convenience. Answered all my questions in a timely manner. Thanks so much.”— Sonya R.