Alternatives to Rubber Bands

Wearing rubber bands is usually the best and most comfortable way to perfect your bite. However, for various reasons, we sometimes need to consider alternatives. Sometimes a patient has a particularly severe bite problem, or they have trouble remembering to wear their rubber bands. We have a few different options when this happens. 

Herbst Appliance

A Herbst appliance helps to correct a severe overbite. It has metal bands that are cemented to some of the teeth. Metal telescoping arms connect the bands together and essentially act as rubber bands that the patient cannot remove. Herbst appliances are very effective, but can take time to get used to. They correct the bite by positioning the mandible forward.


Orthodontists can also use springs, like the CS5000 spring, that attach the top wire to the bottom wire. The springs cannot be removed by the patient. They are less bulky than a Herbst appliance, but still quite effective. These are a good option for patients who have a hard time wearing their rubber bands as much as they are supposed to. 


Dr. Peterson doesn’t ever like to remove adult teeth if possible, but if a patient doesn’t wear elastics and keeps breaking springs, this is another alternative option. Your dentist can remove 2 teeth on top and Dr. Peterson can then move the teeth with the braces to get to a more ideal bite to get rid of your overbite.

Finishing in a less-than-ideal bite

If the patient and parent desire, braces can be removed before the bite is correct. The teeth will be straight, but the two arches won’t fit together perfectly. Sometimes this is okay and not noticeable to the average person. Other times, it will be noticeable and may even feel uncomfortable. It’s best to follow Dr. Peterson’s recommendation if you are considering this option. 

In conclusion, while rubber bands are the simplest way to correct your occlusion, there are alternative options that may work for you. If you have questions, ask at your next adjustment or give us a call! The team at Peterson Family Orthodontics in San Tan Valley is always happy to assist you.

Schedule your FREE consultation today!

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