Lip Bumper Therapy

Lip Bumper Therapy

Your lip bumper is a very important part of your orthodontic treatment. The lip bumper appliance is designed to gain space and make room for your lower teeth. It does this by moving your molars toward the back of your mouth or allowing the front teeth to drift forward. In some cases the bumper is used to stop a lower lip contraction habit thus allowing the lower teeth to align. At first the appliance will be tied in and not be able to be removed. In time the Doctor may untie the bumper allowing it to come out for brushing. At some point you will be asked to wear the bumper nights only. This is done to maintain the correction you gained during full time wear.

What to Expect

At first the bumper will feel very strange against your lower lip. You may notice your lip plumps out a little. As time goes on and your teeth move back you lip will flatten out. The back teeth that have the bands may become sore or tender for a few days, following an adjustment. This will subside and the appliance will feel fine. While the bumper is tied in, food may become lodged between the bumper and your lower teeth and gums. When the doctor unties it, brushing becomes much easier.

Do’s

  • Wear the lip bumper full time (including eating and sleeping).
  • Brush around the bands and bumper very well.
  • When the appliance is untied by the doctor, brush the bumper, teeth and gums underneath very well.
  • At the time the doctor starts you on nights only you must not forget to wear it every night or all of the hard work you achieved while wearing it full time will be lost. If you miss a night wear it the next day to make up for the lost night.
  • Use Tylenol or other pain relieving medication for the first couple of days if necessary.

Don’ts

  • Do not chew gum, taffy, or sticky candy while you have your bumper and bands in your mouth.
  • Do not twist or pull the bumper out unevenly. This may loosen the bands. Gently wiggle it, pulling it forward.
  • Do not leave it out of your mouth for any reason. You will lose all of the tooth movement you may have gained.

Headgear/Reverse Pull Headgear

The headgear/reverse pull headgear is a very important part of your orthodontic treatment. In the case of the reverse pull headgear it will be helping to move your upper jaw forward which is critical to do at a young age, thereby reducing or possibly eliminating the need for very involved jaw surgery later in life. This treatment is to be taken very seriously and followed precisely if an acceptable result is to be achieved. With regular headgear we are holding the upper jaw back, or redirecting its growth.

What to Expect

  • The headgear in both cases attaches to at least two teeth either directly or with elastics. Those teeth will
  • feel sore or tender for a few days following an adjustment or change in elastic band strength.
  • Sleeping will be different at first until you get used to sleeping with the headgear on your face.
  • If the bands or expander which the headgear attaches to becomes loose, than discontinue the headgear and call our office.

Do’s

  • Wear your headgear at least 14 hours a day, longer wear would be even more beneficial.
  • Wear your headgear consistently everyday to get the proper orthodontic benefit.

Don’ts

  • Never let somebody pull on your headgear.
  • Never play rough while your headgear is on.
  • Do not skip any days, this will cause improper movement.

Removable Appliances (Retainer, Activator, Expander, Bite Plate)

The removable appliance is a very important part of your treatment. It is an extremely precise and custom piece of equipment that requires excellent care and attention. Removable appliances are made from a detailed impression and model to fit only your mouth. Because they cannot be mass-produced they are hand-made by expert orthodontic lab technicians which require a new impression for each appliance. These appliances can be delicate and are expensive to replace so please handle them carefully.

What to Expect

When you get a new appliance it will feel very clumsy and strange in your mouth. Initially speaking, eating, drinking, and swallowing will feel impossible. You must leave the appliance in for everything you do! If you take it out you will never get used to it. The break-in period is usually about 2-3 days, then it will feel fine.

Do’s

  • Wear it 24 hours/7 days a week. Remove it only for brushing or to wear a mouthguard during sports. Eat and sleep with it.
  • Clean it with your toothbrush and toothpaste carefully. You can also use Retainer Brite tablets, denture cleaning tablets, or soap and water if it falls on the floor.
  • If it has a screw to expand do not forget to turn it with your key as prescribed. The tightness will go away quickly.
  • Use Tylenol or other pain relieving medication for the first couple of days if necessary.

Don’ts

  • Never boil or submerge it in very hot water. It will lose its shape and fit.
  • Never place it in anything other then your retainer case. It will become lost or broken that way.
  • If it cannot be worn for some reason, never stop wearing it. Whatever was accomplished will be lost and the appliance may lose its fit, requiring a new one to be made. Wear the appliance at least part-time (nights only) if there is a problem. This will maintain its fit until you can get into the office to have the problem taken care of.

Lost or broken Phase I appliances will result in a replacement fee of $290.00.