The Mechanics and Physics of Orthodontics

by MWB News | Thursday, May 7, 2015 | 2749 views

Orthodontics workOrthodontics is one of the most interesting fields of dentistry. It deals with the movement of the tooth and how it affects the dental health and the rest of the body. As it is about dental movements, other sciences, such as biomechanics and physics, are involved in it.

When it comes to orthodontia, the first appliance that comes to mind is braces. Providers of clear braces, such as, say that there are other devices and components that go hand in hand with wires and brackets.

Brackets and Wires

You can easily understand the physics behind the brackets and wires. Physics 101: Isaac Newton’s third law of motion states that every force creates an equal and opposite reaction. Putting it in context, the bracket-wire system is about application of force onto the teeth and teeth’s reaction to the force in an opposite direction.

Orthodontists attach brackets to the teeth, and secure them with an arch wire. As the wires are U-shaped, a force will act on the brackets that are attached to the misaligned teeth. The teeth will react to the application of the force by moving into the shape of the wire. The process does not stop there.

Rubbers and Extenders

For serious cases, orthodontics may use a combination of elastics and extenders to keep the application of force. Elastic hoops are typically attached to the bracket’s metal hooks. They can span from the top teeth to the bottom teeth. As these hoops are attached to both directions, the force applied is distributed equally to both directions. These hoops are used to apply lateral and vertical force to correct the alignment of the teeth and jaws.

The extenders, on the other hand, work the same way. Nonetheless, the application of force is on either side of the jaw. These devices are used to push the teeth outward and make more room for the palate.

These are only some of the things you need to know about how orthodontics works based on physics. Talk to your dentist if you want to know how the rest of the treatment works.

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