Types of Orthodontic Appliances

elastics (rubber bands)

Elastics (Rubber Bands)

Brazos Valley Orthodontics offers a comprehensive range of orthodontic appliances to help our patients achieve beautiful, healthy smiles. One of the appliances we commonly use is elastics, also known as rubber bands. Wearing elastics can significantly improve the fit of your upper and lower teeth, enhancing the effectiveness of your orthodontic treatment.


Elastics apply gentle, continuous pressure to guide your teeth into their proper positions. They are custom-fitted for each patient and are typically worn in specific configurations as prescribed by your orthodontist. Following the instructions is essential to ensure the best possible results.


By wearing elastics consistently and as directed, you can help correct various orthodontic issues, such as overbites, underbites, or misaligned jaws. The success of your treatment depends on your commitment to wearing elastics as prescribed, which will optimize the alignment of your teeth and contribute to a healthy bite.






In addition to elastics, we offer the Forsus Fatigue Resistant Device as an alternative to traditional headgear. The Forsus appliance is designed to promote jaw growth in adolescents. It can effectively address excessive overbites, improve teeth alignment, and potentially eliminate the need for jaw surgery. It is a discreet and comfortable option for patients seeking functional correction without the inconvenience of external headgear.




Headgear is another orthodontic appliance that can treat overbites or underbites. It works by gently exerting pressure on the upper teeth and jaw, limiting further forward growth of the upper jaw or encouraging the development of the lower jaw. Headgear is typically worn for a specified period, as your orthodontist prescribes. It can significantly contribute to correcting your bite alignment.


herbst appliance

Herbst® Appliance

For younger patients with overbites, the Herbst® appliance is often recommended. This fixed appliance promotes lower jaw advancement and encourages the upper molars to move backward. The Herbst appliance helps correct the overbite and establish proper alignment by guiding the growth of the jaws and teeth. Most patients wear the Herbst device for about 12 to 15 months, leading to long-term improvements in their smile and bite.


palatal expander

Palatal Expander

To address a narrow upper jaw, we may recommend a palatal expander. This appliance gently applies pressure to the upper molars, widening the arch and creating more space for crowded teeth. The expander is adjusted periodically by your orthodontist. Once the desired expansion is achieved, it is worn for several months to ensure the stability of the newly created space.




Positioners are the final step in your orthodontic treatment. These appliances are custom-made to fit your teeth and are worn for a short period, usually four to eight weeks. Positioners help complete the last few tooth movements, ensuring that your teeth are in optimal positions and that your bite is aligned correctly.




After your teeth have been straightened, it is essential to maintain their new positions. Retainers hold your teeth in place and prevent them from shifting back. Retainers can be removable or fixed, depending on your orthodontist's recommendation. It is crucial to follow the instructions provided for retainer wear and care to ensure the long-term success of your treatment.



Separators or Spacers

Before placing orthodontic bands, separators or spacers may be used to create space between your teeth. These small rubber doughnuts are gently placed between specific teeth to push them apart. The separators are typically removed before the placement of bands, and it is important to avoid sticky foods, toothpicks, or floss that may dislodge them.


Twin Block Appliance

Our practice also offers the twin block orthodontic appliance, a patient-friendly option for correcting jaw position and function. The twin block appliance consists of two separate devices—one for the upper arch and one for the lower arch—that advance the lower jaw. This appliance is worn full-time, including during meals, but can be easily removed for oral hygiene. 


Its smooth acrylic construction and minimal wires contribute to a more comfortable experience. The twin block appliance can lead to a broad and beautiful smile, improved jaw function, enhanced profile, and a stable and healthy temporomandibular joint. It is an effective solution for patients requiring advanced lower jaw correction.



Visit Brazos Valley for Your Orthodontic Appliances


At Brazos Valley Orthodontics, we are committed to providing personalized orthodontic treatment and selecting the most suitable appliances for each patient's unique needs. Whether it's elastics, headgear, expanders, or retainers, we will guide you through the process, ensuring a successful outcome and a confident smile. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and learn more about the orthodontic appliances we offer.