What is a Lip Bumper in Orthodontics?

orthodontics Houston, TX

Orthodontics is one of the special fields in dentistry that focuses on straightening teeth, closing gaps and correcting jaw misalignments. Oftentimes, braces or aligners are used in orthodontics to help patients achieve healthier and more appealing teeth. Additionally, there are certain situations in which other types of orthodontic treatment is required. One type of appliance that general dentists often administer is called a lip bumper. Lip bumpers can be extremely helpful in orthodontics. Ready to find out why?

How lip bumpers are used in orthodontics

Keep reading to learn more about lip bumpers and how they are used in orthodontic treatment.

What are lip bumpers?

A lip bumper is an orthodontic appliance used to create more space for the lower teeth. They are typically small thin wires that are covered in a plastic material. On either end of the lip bumper, there are two small molar bands that go around the back two molars, one on the left and one on the right. These bands hold the plastic-covered wire in place. Oftentimes, orthodontic lip bumpers are removable, but general dentists highly recommend that they are worn as often as possible to help aid the treatment process. 

A lot of people wonder why lip bumpers are placed in front of the teeth. The answer is that they help avoid pressure from the lips or cheeks. This pressure can often cause problems for the teeth, which can result in long-term damage. 

The role they play in orthodontics

Through lip bumper therapy, orthodontic patients can expect their molars to be moved further back within the mouth. Additionally, the front teeth can shift towards the front of the mouth. In other rare instances, lip bumpers are used to stop a contraction of the lower lip, which helps re-align the lower arch of teeth. Lower lip contraction habits often cause alignment issues for the jaw, which can lead to an uneven bite. Uneven bites often cause serious oral health problems later on down the line. 

When are lip bumpers required?

Lip bumpers are required for orthodontic patients who have uneven bites or a minimal amount of space in their lower arch. General dentists typically recommend lip bumpers for those who cannot benefit from braces or aligners until their spacing issues are resolved. 

Things to note

It is also good to know that some patients may require headgear to be worn in addition to the lip bumper. Orthodontics relies heavily on headgear, especially when the patient has jaw alignment problems. The headgear appliance connects directly to the lip bumper and it helps increase the pressure that is applied, which urges the teeth to shift into their appropriate position. 

Additionally, it is also important to understand how crucial it is to wear the lip bumpers on a regular basis. Without regular wear, the treatment process may not work efficiently or properly, thus possibly creating more problems later on down the line. 

Reach out today!

Want to learn more about lip bumpers in orthodontic treatment? General dentists can provide additional information, including answering questions or addressing concerns. Reach out today to learn more or to get started!

Request an appointment here: https://www.lastingimpressionsdentalgroup.com or call Lasting Impressions Dental Group at (832) 784-8212 for an appointment in our Houston office.

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