Understanding the Parts and Function of Braces

Orthodontics are an important component of your overall oral health. You may think of braces as something you wear to create a straighter smile, but it’s really the function and longevity of your bite that you’re trying to preserve. Straight teeth are easier to clean, and they don’t cause damage to one another. A bite that is in alignment prevents premature wear and functions better. By understanding the parts and function of braces, you can better understand why this treatment is a necessary step for your oral health.

Braces Take Time to Work Properly

A big turn off for most people when it comes to braces is the timeline. Braces take a long time to work properly because they are physically moving your teeth. Your teeth are fixed in place within your jawbone. That’s what gives them strength and stability. It makes sense that in order to move your teeth, the process would take time. Braces use brackets, wires, and bands to gently, but consistently, push and pull your teeth into alignment. Using constant pressure, you can actually correct a crooked bite, but the process does take time.

What Are the Parts that Make Up Your Braces?

Braces are composed of several parts that all function together to straighten your teeth. Brackets are bonded to the surface of each tooth using a special glue. The brackets are put in place so that the archwire can run through them and connect all the teeth as they are being moved. Ligature elastics are used to hold the archwire in place so that it can provide the necessary pressure to move your teeth. Rubber band elastics are worn and adjusted to correct the bite and align the teeth. During check-in appointments, your orthodontist will make adjustments to these components to guide your teeth into the right alignment.

Maintaining Your Braces Is an Important Step in the Process

Because your braces will likely be in place for 1 to 2 years, it’s important to maintain them on a daily basis. Braces add extra components to your mouth that can make it more difficult to clean your teeth. You’ll want to take extra care to brush and floss your teeth during braces treatment. You’ll also want to make sure to avoid particularly sticky foods, hard or crunchy foods, and foods that you have to bite into. If a component of your braces becomes compromised or broken, be sure you contact your orthodontist as soon as possible.


Dr. Afshan Ahmed and the team at North Spring Dental welcome you and your family to a different kind of dental care experience. Our practice is one in which you can rest assured that you will enjoy a relaxing, personalized visit. To find out more about our comprehensive general, orthodontic, and family dentistry services, call our dental office in Springfield, OH today at 937-399-3800.