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What are separators?

December 21, 2017

We commonly use bands on the back molar teeth for orthodontic appliances.  These bands are much like metal rings that wrap around your entire tooth. Most patients do not have spaces between their teeth, and fitting a ring or a band would be painful. To make room we put something called a separator between the teeth for approximately 1 week before to create enough room to insert the bands with as much patient comfort as possible.

Our patients do very well with these separators and you will often hear them called “donuts” or “gummy bears” in our Port Credit Orthodontist Clinic. These rubber bands are essentially small elastics that are first stretched out with a special instrument. We put them in by flossing them between the contacts of your teeth where additional space is needed. The patient might feel slight pressure because of the rubber band squeezing between their teeth.

Between the appointments we ask the patient not to floss or pick at their separators. It is also important to avoid chewy sticky food as this can dislodge the elastic. If a separator falls out, this is normal it just means that enough space has been created. If this is to happen please call us and we can schedule you to have your separator replaced before your next visit.

The separators feel a little bit like you have a piece of food stuck between their teeth.  Patients may notice that they have a brief soreness from the slight tooth movement and pressure. If you have any discomfort during this process you take over the counter pain medication which can be recommended by your local Mississauga Orthodontist, Dr. Virdee.

From Our Orthodontics Blog