ELASTICS

 

The elastics you have been given must be worn full-time and changed at least once or twice a day. If the same elastics are left on all day they will break easily and they will lose their elasticity by the end of the day, slowing tooth movement. Remove the elastics to brush and take them out to eat, although if you can learn to eat most foods with them in, you will get done with them sooner. If you wear your elastics 80% of the time, you will get no movement. It takes a long time to move the teeth where we want them, but a very short time for them to move back to their original position when the elastics are not being worn. Patients who report that they are wearing the elastics most of the time, I generally see no movement. You may be given a weaker set of elastics and a stronger set. If you start wearing the weaker set, you may feel some minor discomfort for three to four days. When this discomfort subsides, try to start wearing the stronger set. You will feel minor discomfort again for three or four days, but the teeth will move much faster and you will get done much quicker wearing a heavier elastic. If you remove the elastics when you start to feel discomfort, your teeth will feel great, but you will have to endure three or four more days of discomfort when you put them back in. If necessary, Tylenol may be taken during the three to four days of discomfort.