Toothy Questions: What is a Temporary Anchorage Device? - Specialist Orthodontic Group : Specialist Orthodontic Group
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Toothy Questions: What is a Temporary Anchorage Device?

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A temporary anchorage device (TAD) is also known as a mini-implant. These are occasionally used during teeth realignment treatment in cases where there is a more severe malocclusion.

If your orthodontist suggests that a temporary anchorage device or mini implant might be beneficial for you, don’t worry. The process of fitting a device is very straight-forward. Once it’s in, you’re unlikely to be aware of it on a daily basis.

What does a temporary anchorage device do?

A TAD or mini implant is usually used to correct an alignment problem that might otherwise need more substantial jaw surgery.

The device itself is very small, between and 2mm. It is a specialist titanium alloy screw that will be inserted in the space between the roots of your teeth and the roof of your mouth. Once this is fitted, it will be connected to a traditional fixed brace to help gradually ease your teeth into the preferred position.

How is a temporary anchorage device fitted?

A temporary anchorage device will be fitted by your orthodontist. They’ll use a local anaesthetic to numb the area of gum in question, then will gently insert the mini implant. Some patients do feel a small amount of discomfort for the first twenty four hours, but this can be managed by taking paracetamol or ibuprofen.

How long will you need to wear the temporary anchorage device?

How long you’ll need to keep the device in will depend on your particular orthodontic issues. Most people need to wear them for a period of between a few months and a year. When it’s time for the TAD to come out, it can be removed very easily by just winding it out. You won’t usually need anaesthesia for this.

Do you have more questions about temporary anchorage devices? We’d be more than happy to talk you through them. Why not book a consultation with one of our specialist orthodontists?