Dental Terminology

Archwire Wire applied to two or more teeth through fixed attachments to cause or guide orthodontic tooth movement.

Band(orthodontic) – A thin metal ring, usually stainless steel, which serves to secure orthodontic attachments to a tooth. The band, with orthodontic attachments welded or soldered to it, is closely adapted to fit the contours of the tooth and them cemented into place.

Full-archwire – An archwire extending from molar region to molar region.

GingivaThe tissue that surrounds the teeth consisting of a fibrous tissue that is continuous with the periodontal ligament and a mucosal that is continuous with the lining of the mouth.

Hygiene – The practice of measures designed to attain and preserve health.

Ligature – A tie used to secure individual teeth to an orthodontic archwire, typically made of wire or elastic material.


1. Archwire: wire used as a source of force to direct teeth to move in desired directions.

2. Headgear tube: a cylindrical tube where the headgear is attached, if pre scribed.

3. Ball hook: used for attachment of elastics.

4. Elastic ligature: grey or clear elastic tie used to secure the archwire to the bracket.

5. Steel ligature: small steel wire tied to the bracket to secure the archwire to the bracket.

6. Coil spring: small spring placed around arch wire to either maintain or increase the space between teeth.

7. Elastic: rubber band used to move teeth in the prescribed direction.

8. Gingiva: soft tissue around and between the teeth.

9. Elastic hook: hook soldered to band to serve as a place to hook your elastics to the molar tooth