Temporary anchorage devices (TADs) for orthodontic anchorage are widely accepted. They are changing the way orthodontists treat some patients’ malocclusions. TADs provide a fixed point from which to apply force to move teeth. They can be placed in many different sites in the mouth. Placement is customized for each patient. TADs may contribute to predictable results, shorter treatment time and completion of active treatment on schedule.
There is little or no discomfort when a TAD is placed. Caring for your TAD generally requires only routine brushing. Although small the TAD does a big job of helping move your teeth predictably into optimal positions.
What are TADS (Temporary Anchorage Devices)?
TADs are titanium-alloy mini-screws, ranging from six-12 millimeters in length and 1.2 to two millimeters in diameter. They are fixed to bone temporarily to enhance orthodontic anchorage. Titanium alloys have been used as joint replacements and for dental implants for many years. These alloys are not rejected by the body. TADs allow the doctor to overcome limitations of certain appliances to perform more difficult tooth movements predictably.
Where are TADs placed?
TADs are placed in the bone between the roots of the teeth and can be placed in the bone in the roof of the mouth as well.
How is a TAD placed and does it hurt?
Placement is minimally invasive and often completed using only topical anesthetic. TADs are inserted directly into the bone using a special instrument. There is little or no discomfort because there are no nerve endings in the bone tissue. Once placed, the TAD can be used as orthodontic anchorage immediately.
Because of the possibility that TADs can loosen or fall out, patients should avoid picking or pulling at the TAD. If the TAD does become loose or come out, call our office as soon as possible.
How long are TADs left in?
We will advise you about how long a TAD will be needed. It may be required only for a few months, or it may be needed throughout your orthodontic treatment. TADs are versatile and may be used in different parts of treatments.
Can TADs be used for patients at any age?
TADs are placed on patients who have permanent teeth. Patients with active periodontal (gum) disease may not be candidates for TADs.