Removable appliances are very simple devices which clip on to the teeth (usually the upper arch) and they can bring about simple movements such as moving a tooth forwards that is trapped behind the bite (i.e. in a ‘crossbite’). These tend to be used in simple orthodontic cases where a fixed brace (metal or ceramic) may not be a suitable choice or where a patient would rather a less invasive treatment. They are also used for young patients who are not yet ready for a comprehensive correction but need some early intervention to prevent other problems developing over time.
A removable appliance is made by taking an impression of the teeth which is then converted to a plaster model. From this, a skilled technician will manually form the acrylic and wires to the shape of the teeth in order that it applies pressure in the correct places.