You may hear Dr. Michael Cook and our team use words or phrases specific to your treatment when you visit Cook Orthodontics. We have provided an orthodontic dictionary for your use and also invite you to speak with a member of our team if you have any questions. To learn more and schedule an appointment with our orthodontist in Sandy, Utah, call us today at 801-523-2509.

Orthodontic Procedures

The process of fitting and cementing orthodontic bands to your teeth when you are receiving braces.

Cephalometric X-ray:
A type of dental radiograph, or X-ray, which shows a complete image of your mouth, jaw and supporting structures. Cephalometric X-rays are taken to show the relative positions of the face, jaws and teeth.

A meeting with your orthodontist during which your oral health and treatment options are discussed prior to creating a personalized treatment plan.

The process of removing the orthodontic bands of your braces from your teeth.

The process of removing cemented orthodontic brackets from your teeth after you complete your braces treatment.

Final Records:
Photos, impressions for study models and X-rays of your face and teeth taken on the day your braces are removed. These final records are kept at our office indefinitely to ensure that we can create new retainers and other appliances if needed.

Models of your teeth and mouth made by biting into a soft material that hardens into a mold of your teeth. Your orthodontist will use these impressions to prepare your treatment plan.

Invisalign® clear aligners:
An alternative to traditional braces, Invisalign treatment straightens your teeth with a series of clear custom-molded aligners. This treatment is designed to be discreet and comfortable and can correct many common orthodontic problems.

The process of attaching an archwire to the brackets on your teeth.

The process of monitoring the growth and development of the teeth and jaws as well as the progress of your treatment. This is done through a series of regular visits.

Panoramic X-ray:

An X-ray that rotates around your head to take pictures of your teeth, jaw and other facial areas, giving a more complete picture of your oral structures and tooth positions.

Phase I:
Early interceptive treatment (i.e. expansion, active retainer or partial braces) that is done before all of the permanent teeth have erupted, and often occurs between the ages of six and ten. Early treatment can often prevent the need for more extensive treatments and reduce the overall treatment time during Phase II.

Phase II:
The second and final stage of treatment in which the permanent teeth are positioned to maximize their appearance and function, best accomplished with full braces or Invisalign clear aligners, and usually lasting between 12-18 months depending on the individual.

Complete diagnostic records typically include a medical history, a dental and orthodontic history, clinical examination, plaster study models of the teeth, photographs of the patient’s face and teeth and several X-rays.

An orthodontic screening consists of an exam, an X-ray (if needed) and a question-and-answer session with the patient and parents to determine if orthodontic treatment is needed, and if so when it should begin and which type of treatment is best for the patient.

Parts of Braces

Orthodontic appliances consist of any special appliance used in addition to your regular treatment. Common appliances include spacers, the Forsus™ appliance, palatal expanders, elastics and headgear. Appliances are used to move your teeth or make changes to the shape and alignment of your jaw.

The metal wire that acts as a track to guide your teeth as they move. It is attached to the brackets of your braces and changed periodically throughout treatment as your teeth move to new positions.

A metal ring that is cemented to your tooth, going completely around it. Bands are used to attach the brackets of your braces to your teeth.

The seal created by orthodontic cement that holds your appliances in place.

A metal or ceramic part cemented (“bonded”) to your tooth and which holds your archwire in place.

Coil Spring:
A spring that fits between your brackets and over your archwire to open space between your teeth.

Elastic (Rubber Band):
A small rubber band that is hooked between different points on your appliance to provide pressure to move your teeth to a new position. This is a commonly used orthodontic appliance.

Elastic Tie:
The tiny rubber band that fits around your bracket to hold the archwire in place. They come in a variety of colors for you to customize the appearance of your braces.

Composed of a spring coil rod, the Forsus™ appliance is used while a patient is currently wearing braces. This orthodontic appliance is typically recommended to help move the upper molars back while moving the lower arch forward.

A welded or removable arm to which elastics are attached.

A thin wire that holds your archwire into your bracket.

Lip Bumper:
A lip bumper is an archwire attached to a molded piece of plastic. The lip bumper holds back the molars on your lower jaw to provide more space for your other teeth.

Mouth guard:
A device that protects your mouth from injury when you participate in sports or rigorous activities. Athletic mouth guards can be purchased in many sporting goods stores, but custom-made guards created by a dental professional are more comfortable and provide better protection.

Opal Seal:
A protective sealant that helps to counter the buildup of plaque on your teeth to prevent decay while you are wearing braces.

Rapid Palatal Expander (RPE):
Palatal expanders are a type of orthodontic appliance recommended when the upper jaw is too narrow. They work to gradually widen the upper jaw so that your teeth fit properly and can be aligned correctly.

An orthodontic appliance that is worn after your treatment is completed. Retainers are attached to your upper or lower teeth to hold them in their correct position. Some types of retainers are removable while others are bonded permanently into place on the tongue-side of your teeth.

Separator or Spacer:
A small rubber ring that placed between the teeth to create space for the bands of your braces.

Tie Wire:
A fine wire that is twisted around your bracket to hold the archwire in place.

Dental wax is used to prevent irritation from your braces against your lips or the inside of your cheek.

A crossbow appliance used to help excessive overjet (when the upper front teeth protrude too far in front of the lower teeth).

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