How do braces work?

Clarity Braces

Having straight teeth is important and not just for aesthetic purposes. Teeth that are crooked or out of place (misaligned) affect the way a person chews and talks and how their smile looks. Because they have unnatural spaces, crooked teeth are harder to clean and are more likely to have cavities. In some cases, crooked teeth can affect the way the jaws line up and can cause pain and discomfort.

Orthodontic treatment works by exerting a gentle, gradual pressure to straighten teeth that are growing, or have already grown, out of place. Sometimes, teeth need to move up or down, and sometimes they need to be spaced differently from side to side. That’s what all these orthodontic tools are for.


A bracket is attached to each tooth with a small dab of bonding material during your first treatment visit. Hiller Orthodontics uses both metal
and ceramic self-ligating brackets. SmartClip Bracket_CROP Self-ligating technology allows Dr. Hiller to have the precise degree of control he needs for each phase of a patient's treatment. This, in turn, offers several benefits to our patients including fewer appointment times and shorter treatment times. Clarity BracketCeramic brackets give you a lot to smile about: A comfortable, sculptured design, an attractive, translucent appearance and perhaps best of all, the self-confidence that comes from wearing brackets that look as good as they perform.


Archwire is a thin metal wire that runs from bracket to bracket and puts pressure on the teeth for movement.

Elastic Rings

The Archwire is held to the brackets with elastic rings, sometimes called “o-rings” or “donuts.” The real names for these rings are Elastic Ligatures. Often times, you can choose what color you want so you can customize your transforming smile!


Bands are metal rings that are usually placed on back teeth to anchor the archwire and sometimes to attach springs.

Other Materials

There may be other materials and accessories used for your braces, depending on your case. These may include tubes, hooks, loops, rubber bands, springs, steel ties and headgear. Each case is different, and Dr. Hiller will keep you informed every step of the way.

Tooth Movement

When pressure is applied to your teeth, your teeth are actually getting loosened and repositioned closer to where they’re supposed to be. Once they’re in the right location, the braces hold them there and bone tissue in your jaw grows back in and your new smile stays in place.

Dr. Hiller had additional years of education and training in dental school to be able to provide specialty orthodontic treatment. It usually takes about three days for the bone remodeling process to start, then about three months to grow new bone and then about a year or less to stabilize the results. That’s why you wear your braces for for several months to a couple of years, and why you’re strongly encouraged to wear a retainer…to keep your beautiful new smile in place and healthy!

Looking for a faster route to beautiful results? Ask Dr. Hiller about Propel Treatment.

Our Locations

Conway, NH
127 Main, Street

Littleton, NH
175 Cottage Street

Plymouth, NH
15 Town West Road

St. Johnsbury, VT
161 Western Ave