Dental: Wearing Elastics :: Nationwide Children's  Hospital

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Dental: Wearing Elastics

Elastics are small rubber bands of different sizes worn on your braces. Elastics help move your teeth into proper position. The dental assistant or dentist will show you and your parents how to place and remove the elastics (see Picture 1). With practice in front of the mirror, this will become very easy.

Image of dentist placing elastics

Picture 1: You will be shown how to
place and remove the elastics.

Wearing the Elastics

  • The elastics are to be worn all day and all night except when you eat or brush your teeth (unless your dentist tells you otherwise).
  • Elastics should be removed and replaced with new elastics 3 times a day.
  • Keep extra elastics with you all the time.
  • If an elastic breaks, replace it as soon as possible.
  • Packages of elastics will be given to you at each appointment. If you need more, please ask the dental assistant.
  • It is very important that you wear your elastics faithfully every day.
  • If you run out of elastics or lose them, call the clinic as soon as possible.
  • The length of time you will have to wear elastics depends on how well you wear them.
  • Remember: It is very important to keep your teeth clean during your orthodontic treatment. Please read and follow the instructions in Helping Hand HH-IV-59: Dental: Brushing with Braces.

If you have questions, be sure to ask your dentist or dental assistant.

Dental: Wearing Elastics (PDF)

HH-II-85 6/84, Revised 12/14 Copyright 1984, Nationwide Children’s Hospital 

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