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Chances are that the thought of headgear doesn’t elicit the most positive feelings. Its portrayal in the media doesn’t help. If you’ve seen the movie Finding Nemo, you’ll remember a less-than-lovely child named Darla who visits the orthodontist office. She wears headgear. She’s also rather unkind to the aquatic animals in the fish tank. It’s awkward.

Headgear doesn’t have the greatest reputation. But it’s actually awesome. Unconvinced? Hold your nellies!

Here’s a short description of what qualifies to be called headgear. Headgear refers to any orthodontic appliance with thick wires that extend outside the mouth. Exact designs may vary according to the needs of the patient. Headgear is typically used to fix underbites and overcrowded teeth.

If you’ve ever taken physics, you may recall Newtons laws of motion. They state that to every action there is always an equal reaction. When you stand on the floor, you place your force on upon it. What you may not realize is that the floor is exerting the same force back at you. Braces take advantage of these natural laws to gradually straighten your teeth and align your bite. But sometimes braces can’t provide quite enough force to get the job done. This is when headgear is called on be a hero. It provides extra support to your back teeth. This places pressure on your front teeth and bite, effectively pushing them into alignment.

If you’d like to learn more, you can give us a call in Olney, Maryland at 301-658-7751 to discuss headgear options with Dr. Thomas Dowling. We’re here to make you smile.