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Brit. Lit. 5th
8 November 2016
Orthodontics has changed drastically since it first began. From head gear to brackets and rubber bands, orthodontics before the twenty-first century were a whole different procedure than it is now. For example, the brackets themselves still hold the same idea, but the look and feel have changed since then. They can now manufacture brackets by the millions due to how advanced they have become. In the end, they will give you the same product in the end, which would be, give the patient a beautiful smile.
Orthodontics may seem like the most modern branch of the dentistry, but the “perfect smile” has been a project since ancient Egyptian times. Through various techniques and practices, orthodontics gradually developed to become the sophisticated practice that it is today. As stated in, “Tooth Positioners and Their Effects on Treatment Outcome,” “A poorly aligned jaw or teeth have always affected a persons’ ability to chew and speak (Pravindevaprasad and Therese).” It is not surprising that the history of orthodontics goes back thousands of years. Many mummies from ancient Egypt have been found to have crude metal bands around their teeth, and archeologists believe catgut may have been tied to these bands to provide pressure to move their teeth. Catgut is a strong cord developed from the intestines of certain animals, mainly sheep. No history of orthodontics is complete without mentioning Edward Hartley Angle, considered the Father of Modern Orthodontics. A man with a range of achievements listed in the Journal of Advanced Oral Research, he identified the true properties of a malocclusion, or misalignment, and addressed them with an increasingly effective set of orthodontic appliances beginning in 1880.
Some of today’s braces are translucent or tooth colored. Additionally, metal brackets are now a lot smaller and less noticeable. With multicolored elastic bands that attach the wire to the bracket, todays braces are also more fun. Many young orthodontic patients enjoy color coordinating their rubber bands as a fashion accessory, but this is an accessory that will help a patient achieve a healthy and beautiful smile. Bracket adhesives have advanced into the 21st century along with the color bands. As stated in, “Glass Ionomer Cement,” “Some continuously release fluoride to help protect tooth enamel underneath the brackets, while others are formulated to withstand moisture(Upadhya).” Orthodontics in the 21st century can also provide a glimpse into the future, showing the results that orthodontic care could provide for an individual. New computer software can provide virtual faces, helping orthodontists plan treatments and patients visualize results.
Because crooked teeth have unnatural spaces, they are harder to clean and more likely to have cavities. Orthodontic treatment works by exerting a gentle pressure over time to straighten teeth that are growing, or have already grown, out of place. According to the knowledge presented in, “Supply of Orthodontics,” “Braces have four basic parts: brackets, bonding, elastics, and arch wire.” The ligature elastic is the colored band that holds the arch wire to the bracket. Some types of brackets do not require the ligature elastic, but the ones that do are changed at each visit because old elastics have a higher chance of breaking. Brackets are the item attached to the face of the tooth to hold the arch wire. As stated by, Upadhya, “Bonding is the action of using adhesives to attach the bracket to the tooth itself.” The arch wire is a thin metal wire that runs from bracket to bracket, putting pressure on teeth to correctly place them. At the end of each treatment, the patients are given a retainer. A retainer is a custom-made, removable appliance that helps keep teeth in their new, straightened position after the braces have been removed. Retainers can also help orthodontists fix minor problems with a patients smile.
Bonding cement is used to attach the bracket to the tooth. The cement is placed on the back of the bracket, and placed precisely on the face of the tooth in its perfect position. Any excess cement will be removed for the sake of the patient’s appearance. Since the bonding cement is light sensitive, a bright blue light is used to “cure” the glue. As found in, “Glass Ionomer Cement,” “There are four types of glue that could be used: (1) Glass Ionomer Cements, (2) Resin-modified Glass Ionomer Cements, (3) Self-etching Resin Cements, or (4) Resin Cements, requiring the use of total-etch technique and placement of dentin adhesives on the preparation prior to luting the definitive restoration (Upadhya).” The brackets themselves are usually composed of stainless steel, while clear brackets are composed of a ceramic material rather than steel. Ceramic braces are an “invisible” alternative to regular metal brackets, if the patient is concerned about the appearance of the metal brackets. Clear brackets or tooth-colored brackets help people feel more confident in smiling, talking, and laughing. Linda Mooney states that, “Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile is the source of your happiness.” If the smile is holding the patients back from a maximum appearance, then help the patients out and give those pretty pearls an alignment and boost confidence levels through the roof.
Teeth move when the arch wire puts pressure on the brackets which are glued down. Sometimes, springs or rubber bands are used to exert more force in one direction. Braces exert constant pressure, which over time, move teeth to their proper position. In the report, “Supply of Orthodontics,” the statements is made that, “Occasionally adults have to wear head gear to prevent certain teeth from moving.” When braces put pressure on teeth, the periodontal membrane stretches on one side and is compressed on the other. This loosens the tooth. “The bone grows in to support the tooth in its new position, which is technically called bone remodeling,” was stated in the article, “Reports… Insights into Orthodontics.” Teeth are socketed to their jaw bone, which is a tooth’s support system beyond the gums. As previously mentioned, surrounding each tooth is a periodontal ligament, which attaches to the bone. It does not necessarily take more than four to five months for the teeth to actually straighten out, but the teeth have to be given an immense amount of time in their new position to stay that way when the braces come off. When the braces come off and pressure is released, the patient’s teeth will try and correct themselves back to the original position, and that is where the retainer comes into effect. The retainers are modeled to the patient’s teeth as soon as the braces are pulled off because that is when the teeth will be in their best position.
Given these facts, it is a true statement that braces are effective and helpful in more than just one way. Ancient Egyptians knew how to effectively adjust their teeth with the materials they had. Edward Hartley Angle took an extra step towards advancement with all of his great achievements. From ancient Egyptians to “the father of modern orthodontics,” they all had the same vision, a perfect smile. Orthodontics has come great lengths, starting with sheep intestines to currently using stainless steel. Orthodontics as a whole has one big picture, the perfect smile, but always remember that there is more than one way to achieve that goal and it can be done in many ways.
Mooney, Linda. "Grown-Up Braces." Prevention Oct. 1999: 98. Student Resources in Context. Web. 12 Sept. 2016
Pravindevaprasad, A., and Beena Therese. "Tooth Positioners and Their Effects on Treatment Outcome." Journal of Natural Science, Biology and Medicine 4.2 (2013): 298. Student Resources in Context. Web. 12 Sept. 2016.
"Reports from Department of Orthodontics Provide New Insights into Orthodontics." Health & Medicine Week 18 Oct. 2013: 764. Global Issues in Context. Web. 31 Aug. 2016.
"Supply of Orthodontics." Mena Report 2 Mar. 2015. Global Issues in Context. Web. 30 Aug. 2016.
Upadhya P., Nagaraja, and Kishore G. "Glass Ionomer Cement--the Different Generations." Trends in Biomaterials and Artificial Organs 18.2 (2005): 158+. Global Issues in Context. Web. 12 Sept. 2016.
Dixon 1 light sensitive, a bright blue light is used to “cure” the glue. As found in, “Glass Ionomer Cement,” “There are four types of glue that could be used: (1) Glass Ionomer Cements, (2) Resin-modified Glass Ionomer Cements, (3) Self-etching Resin Cements, or (4) Resin Cements, requiring the use of total-etch technique and placement of dentin adhesives on the preparation prior to luting the definitive restoration (Upadhya).” The brackets themselves are usually composed of stainless steel, while clear brackets are composed of a ceramic material rather than steel. Ceramic braces are an “invisible” alternative to regular metal brackets, if the patient is concerned about the appearance of the metal brackets. Clear brackets or tooth-colored brackets help people feel more confident in smiling, talking, and laughing. Linda Mooney states that, “Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile is the source of your happiness.” If the smile is holding the patients back from a maximum appearance, then help the patients out and give those pretty pearls an alignment and boost confidence levels through the roof.