ORTHODONTICS: Philosophies in Finishing

The finishing stage is the final stage of orthodontic treatment, of which the primary goal is to improve inerdigitation with minor adjustment before debonding. Here are some tips to address open bite in different parts of the arch in the finishing stage.

First, in order to improve molar occlusion, choose the better leveled and aligned arch as a reference to start setting molar occlusion. Cut down the main wire of the opposite arch and ligate together the teeth adjacent to the extraction site to prevent space reopening. Apply short vertical elastics to molars for interdigitation enhancement. Monitor closely individual tooth progression and discontinue wearing elastics once occlusal contact is established, or it may lead to an undesired side-effect of anterior open bite.

Second, if open bite is found in the middle of the arch, for example, from the distal of central incisors to the premolars in this case, a number of treatment modalities can be considered: 1. bend the rigid stainless steal main wire; 2. rebond; 3. change into a lighter arch wire and apply elastics. Never use short vertical elastics on heavy and stiff archwires which has little elasticity in order to improve interdigitation.