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Functional/Orthopaedic Braces

london orthodontics functional appliance

A functional appliance is a brace that is worn on the upper and lower teeth at the same time in order to correct the way upper and lower teeth fit over each other. It may be used to correct very protruding upper or lower front teeth, improve the way in which molar teeth bite together, or even improve your facial profile so that the jaws look more aligned with each other when you look at the face in profile.

Functional braces only work in growing children and adolescents. They help to  promote or modify growth of the jaws, adapt the soft tissues and muscles of the face to new positions, move whole groups of teeth at the same time or change the angulation of teeth.

Depending on the condition of the bite a functional brace treatment starts either at an early age when milk teeth are still present (age 7-10), or around the time of the pubertal growth spurt (age 11-14), when all or nearly all the milk teeth have been shed.

There are varieties of functional appliances e.g. twin block, Frankael appliance, Bass appliance.

If worn all of the time, it will only take a couple of days to get used to and you will quickly adapt to speaking and swallowing with the braces in your mouth. For the brace to work correctly, the appliance must be worn the majority of the time.  If left out of your mouth for prolonged periods it will take longer to get used to wearing it.

The twin block is one type of functional appliance, which has been used quite successfully. The results will depend on the patient’s co-operation and commitment as well as their inherent growth potential

The length of active treatment for a twin block is on average around 9 months, (followed by a further 12 to 18 months of fixed braces), however your treatment could be as fast or as slow as you make it, by choosing to follow, or ignore the advice you have been given.

Link to Instruction
Link to leaflet - BOS Functional (PDF) - British Orthodontic Society: Functional appliances

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Tel/Fax: 0208 944 5545/1515

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