Braces Diagram

braces diagram

Hover your mouse over the circles to the right to learn more about each component of your braces.


This is the main wire that serves as the "track" your teeth move along as they change position. It's often changed throughout the treatment as your teeth move closer into proper position.


Modern braces use a passive "self-ligating" system, which means the archwire is held in place by a sliding mechanism. This allows for freedom of movement, eliminating or greatly reducing the need for tightening.

Power Chain

Made up of the same material as ligatures, Power chains are essentially a number of ligatures grouped together. They typically aid in closing gaps between teeth.

Alastic Tie

A tiny rubber band that applies pressures and assists in moving your teeth. It is often applied to the bracket of the braces.

Tie Wire

Twisted around the bracket, this fine wire helps hold the arch wire in the correct position.

Elastic Band

This small rubber band attached to two different points (usually one upper tooth and one lower tooth) provides additional pressure to move your teeth forward or backward.


Thin metal bands are wrapped around back teeth and cemented in place. Brackets are attached directly to the bands rather than teeth.


smiling child client of Robinson & Ries Orthodontics

“From the minute you walk into the office, someone comforting is guiding you every step of the way. The whole appointment process is made easy, stress-free and fool proof for the patient – from the email and voicemail reminders, the electronic check in system at the office, the appointment itself….When I decided to get braces again as an adult, there were a lot of other choices. But after careful evaluation, I realized Dr. R was the only choice for me!”

~ Stacia VanDyne