What is headgear for braces?

This is a type of device worn with a brace which helps with the repositioning of the teeth. It needs to be worn for quite a few hours each day but its use is declining as orthodontists prefer to use temporary implants instead.

It consists of 3 elements:

  • The facebow: this is a wire component with two parts which include ‘inner arms’ that fit inside the mouth and outer arms which fit outside the mouth, over the cheeks. This acts as an attachment for the headcap.
  • A headcap: this is worn on the head and is attached to the facebow via a series of straps or springs.
  • Rubber bands or springs: these join these together.

The headcap acts a cushioning pad for the facebow and straps. These straps are fastened to the facebow and go round the back of the head or neck. This helps to straighten the teeth.

It tends to be worn in the evening and night only as it is both cumbersome and restrictive. If a child or teenager has to wear headgear then there is the risk of teasing or bullying as a result of this.

It is a useful corrective device but requires the wearer to stick to a routine and be disciplined about wearing it.

Learn more about orthodontics….

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