Pittsburgh Orthodontist

Here's How Teeth Move!

When pressure is applied to a tooth, the forces compress the ligament that attaches the tooth to the bone housing the teeth. This pressure stimulates heretofore dormant cells called osteoclasts that "melt" the bone, providing a path for a tooth to move. On the "other side" of the tooth, where the bone has been "stretched" (the tension side), other cells known as osteoblasts are stimulated to produce new bone (where the tooth was previously located). Thus, the tooth moves ("up, down, rotates, in, out") in a healthy manner! A radiograph (x-ray) of an area that has involved tooth movement does not reveal any sign of the "magical process!"

Contemplate this! Nature does the same thing, automatically, when a tooth erupts into a child's mouth!

Tooth movement is not always uncomfortable. When the treatment is initiated, it is common to have minimal discomfort ("dull ache") which usually dissipates in a few days or can be relieved with a mild analgesic, such as Tylenol or Aspirin. Eventually, teeth often move without sensation.


American Association of Orthodontists

Named a "Top Dentist" by