Orthodontic Appliances

Sometimes there is a need for a functional orthodontic appliance to correct orthodontic problems. Dr. Shaver only uses the highest quality appliances resulting in the most effective and efficient treatment possible.

Herbst Appliance

One of the most common problems is the discrepancy that occurs when the upper teeth protrude beyond the lower. Ordinarily, when we see a patient with the upper teeth protruding, we tend to think that the upper jaw and teeth are too far forward; but, more often than not, this condition is due to a small lower jaw that is further back than it should be. With these patients, we would like to encourage the lower jaw to catch up in growth, and devices like the Herbst appliance help this happen.

Even though the Herbst appliance prevents the lower jaw from moving backward, opening and closing movement still occur easily, and patients do not have any problems learning to chew their food with their lower jaw in this new position.


Rapid Palatal Expander (RPE)

Attached to the upper molars through bonding or by cemented bands, the Rapid Palatal Expander is an orthodontic device used to create a wider space in the upper jaw. It is typically used when the upper jaw is too narrow for the lower jaw or when the upper teeth are crowded or blocked out of the dental arch.  

When patients are still growing, their connective tissue between the left and right halves of their upper jaw is very responsive to expansion. By simply activating the expander through turning a screw in the center of the palatal expander, with a special key we provide, gradual outward pressure is placed on the left and right halves of the upper jaw. This pressure causes an increased amount of bone to grow between the right and left halves of the jaw, ultimately resulting in an increased width.

Space Maintainers

Nance Appliance (Space Maintainer)

Lower Lingual Holding Arch (LLHA)

A space maintainer (Nance appliance or Lower Lingual Holding Arch) is worn when baby teeth are removed prematurely, while waiting for permanent teeth to grow into place.

The Nance appliance is made of two bands that are cemented onto the first molars and a wire spans the roof of the mouth from one molar to the other. An acrylic pad or “button” covers the wire that touches the roof of your mouth directly behind your front teeth. This appliance prevents the molars from “drifting forward”.

A lower lingual holding arch is made of two bands cemented to the lower first molars and a wire that spans in a ‘U’ shape toward the front teeth.

Patients should always brush around the bands daily. Do not eat sticky, chewy candy as it can loosen your appliance. If you have any problems with your Nance or LLHA appliance, please call us immediately.

Quad Helix

Used to gently widen a narrow upper jaw allowing room for crowded teeth and/or correcting a crossbite by gently pushing the upper arch wider. This appliance is typically used in the course of orthodontic treatment and is worn for approximately 6 months. The appliance is cemented to the back molars with molar bands. Discomfort is minimal and should disappear within a few days. Ibuprofen or a non-aspirin pain reliever may be taken as needed. Do not eat popcorn, sticky or hard food.

Forsus Spring

Used to correct an overbite. When the front teeth are too far forward and the lower teeth are too far behind, this may cause protrusive front teeth. The Forsus Spring is designed to gently move the upper teeth back and the lower teeth forward. This is a modern alternative to the old “headgear” and is very effective. Discomfort may remain for a week after the appliance is placed and can be minimized by rinsing with hot, salt water and/or ibuprofen or a non-aspirin pain reliever as needed.

Habit Appliance

Used to correct the habit of thumb sucking or “tongue thrusting” (pushing the tongue against the back of the teeth) causing the upper front teeth to protrude significantly. This appliance may be used in conjunction with other appliances or separate. Habit appliances come in various forms but all are cemented in place to the molars with various wires depending on the habit.


Rubber separators are used between molars to create a very slight space so a molar band can be placed. An orthodontic molar band is a metal ring that is cemented around your molar. A separate appointment will be required a few days to one week after the separators are placed to cement the bands. If a separator should come out prematurely, please call our office immediately so we can instruct you on the best course of action. Separators will not fall out with vigorous brushing so continue to brush as usual. Avoid sticky foods and gum which may cause the separators to fall out prematurely. Very little discomfort is experienced with separators.

Bite Turbos

Bite turbos are used to open up the bite to correct a deep bite. Turbos are small metal or acrylic (blue color) blocks that are placed in the front (anterior) or back (posterior) of your teeth in order for the teeth to move more rapidly and “open up” your bite. When the teeth aren’t biting together tightly (as they did before braces were placed) they can freely move into the correct position. Since turbos are preventing certain teeth from hitting each other, there will be an adjustment period. Rest assure, you will get used to them. They are a very important part of the correction of any deep bite. If a turbo becomes loose or falls off, please call our office to schedule a repair appointment.


Commonly used in orthodontic treatment to align the top jaw and lower jaw so teeth fit together allowing for a comfortable bite and beautiful smile. Consistent elastic wear is very important for successful and efficient treatment. If elastics are not worn consistently, treatment may be delayed. Elastics may be removed when eating, flossing and brushing but must be replaced with new elastics immediately and always worn while sleeping. Various types of elastics may be used throughout treatment. If you run out of elastics, don’t wait for your next appointment. Simply drop by our office for a package.

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7:30am - 5:00pm
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Limited & emergency visits