of Macy from New Hampshire, USA
Macy is 28. She
my initial consultation, the orthodontist said she wanted to
treat me for a moderate deep (over) bite, slight crowding in
both upper and lower arches, and a displaced right second
bicuspid which had shift to the inside of my arch and was now
biting to the inside of its lower partner (a crossbite of one
tooth). She recommended I get full braces, elastics, and
a transpalatal arch (TPA).
the placement appointment, I got full braces on both upper and
lower arches and Class II elastics to help start correcting
the deep bite. The elastics run from my upper canine to my
lower first molar on both sides. I also had metal ligature
ties on all my teeth to take care of the various twists and
shifts that were a result of the crowding.
my first adjustment, they snapped the transpalatal arch into a
slot on the inside of my first molar bands and then used metal
ligature ties to secure it into place. The device itself is a
thin metal rod that slopes up toward the roof of my mouth,
makes a rounded V -shaped bend toward the back of my mouth and
runs back down to the other molar. I was warned it would make
an impression on my tongue and probably would cause soreness
and discomfort for about a week (more like two), and I would
probably find it hard to speak at first (that didn't go away).
Long noodles of any kind became part of my "bad"
foods list because they would be a bear to try to extricate
from around the appliance.
transpalatal arch's purpose is to maintain the width of my
upper arch between the first molars so my braces can pull the
second bicuspid back in line using the molar as an anchor and
reference point. If the arch wasn't in place, my first molar
would shift in to join the second bicuspid much the way my
first bicuspid did when the orthodontist's office finally tied
that second bicuspid firmly into the arch wire. The arch will
stay in until my bicuspid is back in line with my other teeth
and stable in its new position."
Transpalatal Arch device
braces and elastics
"laceback" ligature ties. In a laceback, they
do a "figure eight" on the ligature ties. They put
the wire around the bracket and twist on to the next bracket
where it's looped again. Macy says, "I couldn't find much
about them except they help tilt my teeth back and are part of
the bite aligning process." Note that the arch wire is
held in place with a wire tie, not an elastic.
seven weeks with a braided wire and lacebacks, Macy got a
smooth wire (it's copper colored on the tooth side) with
elastics hooks on each side and stop loops in front of my
first molars. Lacebacks were put on again. The elastics go
from that hook to the hook on her lower first molars.
two photos show the progress on Macy's lower teeth in about
one year. The photo on the left was at the first adjustment,
and the photo on the right is more recent.
is done with her braces! She says, "Here are pictures of
my teeth after the braces were taken off. The ortho wanted to
know if I wanted my pointy canines filed down and I opted to
leave them the way they were. Treatment time came in at 20
months instead of 16-18." Congrats, Macy!