What is the Wax for Braces Used For?



Braces are used to correct teeth. Dentists will fasten them around your teeth so that you can train your teeth into the proper form. Many braces are available, including Hawley retainers that hold tooth position with wire and metal brackets or Ceramic braces that fix your teeth using ceramic covering.

Each type of brace is different and is used for another purpose. For instance, Hawley retainers are fixated to your teeth using brackets and wires. Brackets and wires bond together to secure the parent tube that will house the wire through which you can move other pieces of tubes around it for traction, but only where the bends allow them to be placed.

What is the wax for braces used for?

Mention the word "wax," and most people have a picture in their heads of a black, gooey material that's used to hold pieces of paper together. It also makes an appearance when tearing off sticky labels from fruit or glass jars. While the wax we're familiar with is indeed a type of resin, it's not the kind that's used for braces.

Braces and wires can be uncomfortable and can even rip open your mouth if they aren't handled carefully. Wax applied to the brackets of the braces helps minimize discomfort and makes it easier to eat with them on. The wax also helps keep food from getting caught between teeth, preventing plaque buildup that can lead to gum disease.

Use of wax in orthodontics

In orthodontics, wax is often used to prevent food from being lodged in brackets. The wax is laid over the braces to prevent food particles from getting stuck. During flossing, wax can be used as a lubricant so that food does not get moved around between teeth and cause irritation.

Wax should not be used to replace brushing or flossing! If food particles are allowed to sit in between teeth, they can cause cavities and other health problems. Suppose a person wishes to avoid using wax in their orthodontics due to allergies or other reasons, such as being vegetarian or vegan. In that case, they should check with their orthodontist about what alternatives are available. In some cases, it is not possible to avoid the use of wax, in which case the patient should make sure they are correctly flossing to help prevent decay.

Research evidence

The use of wax to maintain proper oral hygiene is prevalent practice with most orthodontists. Wax can be used to prevent gradual plaque and food accumulation on the brackets, which may lead to gum irritation and tooth decay.

The use of wax is not only widespread among patients but also widely accepted by dental professionals. The use of wax has been shown in many studies conducted in the past decades to be an effective means of reducing food accumulation on brackets, as demonstrated by DeVere et al. on the efficacy of a wax-type retainer as opposed to a wire-and-toothbrush method, and the effectiveness of wax in preventing food accumulation on brackets proven by Grossman, who conducted a study to test the efficacy of dental flossing with different appliances.

The findings from these two research reveal that wax is genuinely an effective method of preventing food accumulation, plaque buildup, and potential tooth decay. However, there are some disadvantages associated with its use. Wax may become less sticky over time if it is not replaced regularly; therefore, it is crucial to monitor patients using this type of retainer carefully. In cases where patients using wax have not been diligent in remembering to replace the wax, gum irritation and tooth decay may result from thick food residue accumulation on their brackets.

In conclusion, there is evidence to support that wax can reduce food buildup on ceramic braces. However, it is essential for both patients and orthodontists to remember that this method of preventing food buildup takes diligence and effort, especially when dealing with young patients who may forget to replace the wax on their retainers.

Related articles:

How to Floss With Braces?

Which braces are best, metal or ceramic?

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