Orthodontics, a field that endeavors to perfect the alignment of teeth, has witnessed a plethora of advancements over the years. One such evolution is in the domain of bracket prescriptions. With an array of choices, ranging from the foundational Edgewise to the modern MB5, it's clear that variety abounds. Yet, while all these types serve the overarching goal of teeth alignment, the difference primarily lies in the brackets themselves. So, what exactly sets these brackets apart? Dive in to unravel the nuances of bracket prescription and discern the distinctions that lie beneath their seemingly similar exteriors.

Bracket Tip

When it comes to orthodontic brackets, understanding the intricacies and nuances of their design can significantly influence the success of treatment. One of these crucial factors is the "tip", and here's a breakdown:

  1. The Basics of Tip:

    • The tip refers to the relationship between the wire and the bracket.
    • It dictates how a tooth will be angled, either medially or distally.
    • Adjustments to this tipping are achieved by altering the slot's relationship to the bracket.
    • Variations can range from 0 up to 13 degrees.
  2. Why Tip Matters:

    • Every tooth has its unique amount of tip, which differentiates from others.
    • Differences between the Roth and MBT prescriptions highlight the importance of the tip. For instance, most of the tip is seen in anterior teeth like incisors and canines, whereas premolars and molars have little to no tip.
    • The MBT prescription has less tip compared to Roth, which can influence the treatment outcome.
  3. The Mechanism of Tip:

    • When a wire bends against a bracket, it produces force. This force, coupled with the bracket's width (or the length of the arm), results in momentum that will tip the tooth in the desired direction.
  4. Factors Affecting Tip:

    • Archwire Stiffness: A stiffer wire produces more force, leading to more tipping.
    • Bracket Width: Wider brackets offer more control over tipping. Hence, in cases where tipping is crucial, wider brackets are preferred. Narrower brackets might be aesthetic and easier to clean but might provide less control.
    • Archwire Size: While the size of the wire is essential for the force it delivers, it's the stiffness of the wire that plays a more significant role in tipping.
  5. Tip in Practice:

    • When leveling teeth, especially in non-extraction cases, excessive tipping can lead to unwanted mesial movement of canine crowns. Lace-backs can be used to prevent this unwanted movement by binding the molar, premolar, and canine.
    • In extraction cases where canines are retracted, distal tipping often occurs. Using Roth brackets with built-in tip can be beneficial in these cases to maintain the desired alignment.

Whether you're using Roth or MBT brackets, having the right prescription can make a significant difference in the outcome. Always consider the specific needs of the case and the unique characteristics of the teeth involved to achieve the best results.

Bracket Torque

  1. Torque: This is the force responsible for rotating the tooth either buccally or lingually. Positive torque involves pushing the root lingually and the crown labially, while negative torque is the reverse.

  2. Bracket Torque: When comparing Roth and MBT systems, all teeth have negative torque except for the upper incisors. In the MBT system, there's increased torque in the upper incisors.

  3. Torque in Brackets: The faces of the brackets appear the same, but the key difference lies in the angle of the base. The torque works similarly to tip, but requires more force due to the smaller length of the arm in the bracket.

  4. Factors Influencing Torque: These include:

    • Archwire stiffness: A stiffer wire, like stainless steel, generates more force than a NiTi wire.
    • Play: The gap between the bracket slot and the wire. This can lead to inefficiencies in torque expression.
    • Archwire size: The more the wire fits into the slot, the better the torque expression.
    • Depth of Slot: Generally, an 0.028 or 0.030 depth is preferred.
    • Slot size: An 18 slot bracket offers more precision for torque but compromises on wire stiffness. Conversely, a 22 slot with a 0.019 x 0.025 stainless steel wire offers good stiffness but with more play.
  5. Overcorrection: Due to the play in the brackets, one may need to overcorrect torque by around 20 degrees, as 10 degrees is already lost due to the play.

  6. Clinical Judgement: To ensure the desired movement, it might be necessary to use different bracket systems on different teeth based on the individual's needs.

In essence, achieving the right torque is a delicate balance of the right wire stiffness, slot depth, and size. Moreover, individualized treatment strategies and overcorrection can be important to achieve the desired tooth position.

Other Bracket Key Points

  1. In-Out Widths of Brackets:

    • Most brackets have the same in-out widths.
    • Exceptions are the upper second premolars in the MBT system and lower incisors, which are 0.5 millimeters wider.
    • The width variations help in achieving proper alignment and canine prominence.
  2. Upper Second Premolars:

    • They might be smaller, necessitating pushing them lingually.
    • There's a preference for using brackets from the Roth system for these teeth due to their reliability.
  3. Considerations in Bracket Selection:

    • If using a lower incisor bracket on an upper tooth, consider the in-out depth.
    • The upper lateral incisor often requires a thicker bracket to achieve the desired positioning relative to the central incisors.
  4. Bracket Rotation:

    • Brackets usually have equal arms.
    • Some, especially those designed by Andrews, incorporate rotation.
    • While manufacturers rarely incorporate rotation in brackets today, it's common for molar buckle tubes.
    • Proper bracket positioning can counteract undesired tooth rotations.
  5. Bracket Slot Size:

    • 18 slot brackets: Easier full engagement, excellent for torque expression with stainless steel wires, and suitable for non-extraction cases.
    • 22 slot brackets: Allow for greater play and are suitable for stiffer wires, making them useful in extraction cases. The larger slot aids in sliding mechanics.
    • Slot size influences torque much more than tip.