La Habra/Chino Hills, CA – When it comes to orthodontic treatment, chances are you want your treatment to be completed quickly and safely. For some patients, we need to use additional tools and devices other than just braces to achieve the proper tooth movements. Temporary anchorage devices (TADs) are one of the tools orthodontists can use. But what are TADs?
TADs are small anchors generally made of titanium or stainless steel that allow an orthodontist to achieve tooth movement faster and more efficiently than with braces alone. They are used along with braces and can be an alternative to other more invasive procedures.
“TADs are basically just very tiny screws that are placed in a patient’s gums and jaw bone to serve as an anchor point,” says. Dr. Robert Gire. “This allows us to apply the force needed to move the teeth as efficiently and comfortably as possible.”
TADs are quick and easy to place. Local anesthetic is used to lightly anesthetize the area and then the implant is inserted. All a patient feels is a slight pressure during the process. Once the anesthetic wears off, some patients may feel slight discomfort for the first 24 hours, but an over-the-counter pain reliever will help.
“Before TADs, we used other teeth for anchorage points,” says Dr. Gire. “That essentially resulted in a tug-of-war applied to the teeth and we frequently saw movement of the teeth that we didn’t want to move, not just the one we wanted to move. TADs provide us with a stable anchor from which we can push or pull to guide the teeth to where they should be.”
One of the biggest advantages to TADs is that it lessens the need for excellent patient compliance. Without excellent compliance, orthodontic treatment can be delayed or prolonged. TADs also offer a higher level of comfort compared to some of the other appliances that are utilized for the same type of movement.
TADs can help orthodontists stabilize teeth that don’t need to move, allow for movements that wouldn’t be possible with braces alone, and they allow the orthodontist a higher level of control over tooth movements.
When the desired tooth movement is reached or when the TAD is no longer needed, it is removed easily and painlessly by your orthodontist. We place and remove our own TADs at Gire Orthodontics. During your complimentary consultation (La Habra, 562690-1199; Chino Hills, 909-393-9911) we’ll determine whether you’re a candidate for TAD treatment. If you are, you can rest assured that your treatment will be as efficient as possible.