23 Orthodontic instruments and their uses

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Orthodontics is one of the departments in dentistry involving the treatment and irregularities of teeth. It involves serial extraction (which is the removal of teeth because of the correction to be done not because of pain. The dentist specifically trained for this purpose is called orthodontics. also, have specialized training in facial abnormalities and disorders of the jaw.

Here is the list of Orthodontic instruments

  • Separator placing pliers
  • Johnsons contouring pliers
  • Nylon band seater
  • Mershon band pusher
  • Posterior band remover
  • Bracket holder
  • Weingart Pliers
  • Ligature tucker/ligature director
  • Mosquito artery forceps – straight
  • Mathieu ligature pliers
  • Coon’s ligature pliers
  • Distal end cutter
  • Ligature cutter
  • Triple beak pliers
  • Omega pliers
  • Nance pliers
  • Light wire pliers
  • Tweed pliers
  • How(e) pliers
  • Mitchells trimmer
  • Adams spring forming pliers
  • Adams universal pliers
  • Mauns heavy duty wire cutter

Uses

Orthodontics is the study of the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of irregularities of the teeth and jaws. Orthodontic instruments are used in conjunction with fixed and removable appliances.

1. Separator placing pliers

 

Orthodontic instruments: Separator placing pliers

Use and characteristics

  • Used for placing elastic separators inter-proximally
  • Single-ended instrument – handle is adapted for a palm grasp (Different sizes and shapes are available).

False friends

Rubber dam clamp forceps and Coons ligature pliers

2. Johnsons contouring pliers

 

Orthodontic instruments: Johnsons contouring pliers

Use and characteristics

  • Used to re-contour and adapt an orthodontic band to a tooth
  • Beaks are tapered with a slight bow
  • One beak is concave while the other is convex allowing re-contouring of bands (Shape of beaks may vary)

3. Nylon band seater

Orthodontic instruments: Nylon band seater

Use and characteristics

  • Used for the patient to bite to facilitate the seating of an orthodontic band
  • Edge of the tip is serrated to facilitate grip
  • Autoclavable

(Many shapes and sizes available)

4. Mershon band pusher

Orthodontic instruments: Mershon band pusher

Use and characteristics

  • Aid in the placement and seating of orthodontic bands
  • Can be used to adapt the coronal portion of the band to the tooth
  • Handle is designed to allow better operator grasp

False friend

Couplands chisel

5. Posterior band remover

Orthodontic instruments: Posterior band remover :

Function, features, and method of use

  • Used to remove posterior orthodontic bands
  • Two stainless steel beaks, one may have a nylon tip (maybe replaceable)
  • When removing a band, the nylon tip is placed on the occlusal surface, and the curved beak is placed at the gingival edge of the band

Varieties

  • Different sizes and shapes available
  • Tip may be metal instead of nylon

6. Bracket holder

 

Orthodontic instruments: Bracket holder

Use and characteristics

  • Securely grasps the orthodontic bracket during placement
  • Applying pressure opens working end and releasing closes working end

Varieties

  • Different sizes and shapes available
  • The control mechanism may vary

7. Weingart Pliers

 

Orthodontic instruments: Weingart pliers

Use and characteristics

  • Used to guide and move the archwire in and out of placement
  • Used to hold the archwire during bending
  • The bend in the beak facilitates easy grasping of the archwire and guiding into buccal tubes

Varieties

Different shapes and sizes of beaks available

8. Ligature tucker/ligature director

Orthodontic instruments: Ligature tucker-ligature director

Use and characteristics

  • Used to tuck excess ligature wire out of the way to reduce tissue trauma
  • Notch in the working end allows the operator to apply pressure to the archwire to bend it into place

Varieties

  • Can be single-ended or double-ended
  • Different sizes and shapes of working ends

9. Mosquito artery forceps – straight

23 Orthodontic instruments and their uses 2

Use and feature

  • Used to grasp and place orthodontic separators, power chain, and modules
  • The beak is serrated for a better grasp

Varieties

Different sizes and shapes are available

False friends

Beebee crown scissors/shears, needle holders

10. Mathieu ligature pliers

23 Orthodontic instruments and their uses 3

Use and features

  • Used to grasp and place ligature wires and elastics
  • Beaks are serrated for better grasp
  • The handle has a locking mechanism and a spring mechanism that help the operator to quickly open and close the pliers

Varieties

Beaks can vary in length and angle

11. Coon’s ligature pliers

 

Orthodontics instruments-Coon’s ligature pliersUse

Used to tie long ligatures into a ‘figure-of-eight’

Varieties

Various angles and sizes of beaks

False friends

Rubber dam clamp forceps and separator placing pliers

12. Distal end cutter

 

23 Orthodontic instruments and their uses 4

Use and features

  • Used to cut the distal portion of an orthodontic archwire
  • Can be used extra-orally (prior to placement)
  • Can be used intra-orally (after placement)
  • There is a ‘safety’ mechanism to hold the cut archwire so it does not fall into the patients mouth

Varieties

Various angles and sizes of beaks

13.Ligature cutter

 

23 Orthodontic instruments and their uses 5

Use and features

  • Used to cut ligature wires (not to be used on ligatures more than 0.015 mm in diameter as it damages the cutting edge)
  • Can also be used to cut elastics and power chains
  • Edges are sharp and can be sharpened when they become dull

Varieties

  • Variety of beaks and cutting angles
  • Some may have replaceable beaks

14.Triple beak pliers

 

23 Orthodontic instruments and their uses 6

Use

  • Used to place a bend in an orthodontic archwire
  • Used to contour and shape an orthodontic archwire

Varieties

Beaks may vary in size and shape

15. Omega pliers

 

23 Orthodontic instruments and their uses 7

Use and feature

  • Used to bend and form loops in orthodontic archwires
  • Grooves in beaks facilitate bending loops into archwires
  • Used to bend removable appliance wires

Varieties

Beaks may vary in size and shape

16. Nance pliers

 

23 Orthodontic instruments and their uses 8

Use

Used to hold and bend orthodontic archwires

Varieties

Beaks may vary depending on the type of archwire to be bent.

17. Light wire pliers

 

23 Orthodontic instruments and their uses 9

Use

Used to bend and place loops in an orthodontic archwire

Varieties

Variety of beaks

False friend

Adams spring forming pliers

18. Tweed pliers

23 Orthodontic instruments and their uses 10

Use and feature

  • Used to bend and form loops in orthodontic archwires
  • Grooves in beaks facilitate bending loops into archwires.

19. How(e) pliers

 

23 Orthodontic instruments and their uses 11

Use and features

  • Multipurpose orthodontic pliers
  • A long beak with serrated tips for grasping
  • Can be used to grasp bands and archwires during placement and removal, and to tie metal ligatures

Varieties

Beaks may vary in size and shape

20. Mitchells trimmer

 

Orthodontic instruments-Mitchells trimmer

Uses

  • Used after placement of orthodontic bands to remove excess cement
  • Can be used after de-bonding brackets in the removal of excess cement with a conventional handpiece and a de-bonding bur

False friends

Hollenback 31/2 carver, Wards carver

21. Adams spring forming pliers

 

23 Orthodontic instruments and their uses 12

Use and features

  • Used to adjust springs on orthodontic removable appliances
  • Can be used to smooth and contour archwires
  • One beak is rounded, the other is square/flat-ended

Varieties

  • Beaks may vary in size and shape

False friend

Light wire pliers

22. Adams universal pliers

 

23 Orthodontic instruments and their uses 13

Use

Used to adjust headgear, face bows and Adams clasps on removable appliances

Varieties

Different sizes are available

False friend

Adams spring forming pliers

23. Mauns heavy duty wire cutter

 

Orthodontic instruments-Mauns heavy duty wire cutter

Use

To cut heavy archwires or appliance wires – used extra-orally

Varieties

Different sizes and shapes of beaks are available

 

MISCELLANEOUS ITEMS

Cheek retractors

 

23 Orthodontic instruments and their uses 14

Use

  • To retract cheeks and lips for better visibility
  • Often used when bonding fixed appliances and taking photographs

 

Varieties

  • Different sizes and shapes available
  • Plastic and metal types available

Intra-oral mirrors

 

23 Orthodontic instruments and their uses 15

Use

  • Aid in visibility when taking intra-oral photographs
  • Often used in conjunction with cheek retractors

Varieties

Different sizes and shapes available

Orthodontic bracket card

23 Orthodontic instruments and their uses 16

Use and features

  • Used to organize and hold orthodontic brackets to facilitate quick bracket  placement
  • Each circle on the card corresponds to a particular tooth in the mouth
  • Brackets are placed corresponding to the tooth to be bonded
  • Tape on the back of the card helps to keep brackets in place

Orthodontic Instruments Set-ups

The following instruments are common to all the below-listed set-ups

  • Mouth mirror and handle (p. 33)
  • Sickle/contra-angled probe (p. 35)
  • College tweezers (p. 37)
  • Hand mirror

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