Headgear is the general name for an appliance that creates a special force for guiding the growth of your face and jaws. We also use headgear to move your teeth into a better position or to prevent them from moving when they’re not supposed to.
Because each patient is different, Dr. Mendez will estimate the length of time that you will need to wear your headgear.
The length of time varies depending on:
1. Type of growth pattern of the patient
2. The severity of the discrepancy between the jawbones
3. The rate of growth of the patient
4. The consistency of wear/amount od time-worn per day (patient compliance)
What to Expect:
1. Some discomfort during the first week which may affect the ability to fall asleep at night. Taking Tylenol or any other analgesic 2 hours prior to going to sleep will help during the adjustment period.
2. The back teeth may become slightly loose with consistently good wear.
What to Do:
1. Wear headgear 12 to 14 hours per day. Wearing the headgear all the time would be ideal, but is not usually possible or realistic.
2. Be consistent, wearing it at least at night. Missing even one night will require several extra nights to make up the lost time and will extend the treatment time.
3. Keep a “scorecard” to track the amount of time worn to allow us to determine if the progress is what should be expected from the time-worn.
4. Bring the headgear and the scorecard with you to each orthodontic appointment.
5. Never wear headgear during rough play or sport – injury could occur.
6. If the face bow comes off at night, we may need to increase the force on each side.