Dr. Greg Jorgensen
(505) 891-9440
1401 Barbara Loop SE
Rio Rancho, NM 87124

The Jorgensen Orthodontics Blog

Do Damon Braces Really Move Teeth Faster?

Posted by Dr. Jorgensen on January 9th, 2012

DamonQWe all want everything faster. You may have heard that Damon braces can straighten your teeth faster, with fewer appointments, and without extractions or expanders. What is the Damon System and is it better than regular braces?

First of all, I need to make a disclosure. I use Damon brackets and I love them. They are currently in their fourth revision and I’ve been a fan ever since they came out in the early 90’s. Having said that, there are myths about what they can and can’t do, and I’d like to share my opinion based upon 20 years of experience.

Damon brackets are a type of bracket known as self-ligating. To “ligate” means to bind or tie. With conventional braces, the wires are held in place by ligatures or o-rings that secure them to the brackets (which are the metal pieces attached to the teeth). With self-ligating braces, part of the bracket itself holds the wire in place without the need for o-rings or steel ties. Some brackets have doors or “slides.” Others have clips. The Damon bracket was not the first self-ligating bracket, but I believe it is the best.

Some of the claims about Damon brackets are that they won’t cause pain as they move your teeth, you won’t need to have an expander or have permanent teeth removed, you won’t need headgear or rubber bands to fix your overbite, and that your treatment will be much shorter than with regular braces. Here’s what I have seen at Jorgensen Orthodontics (and what has been supported by actual research):

If your teeth are being moved (Damon, Invisalign, or anything else), they are going to get sore. In order for orthodontic movement to take place, there must be pressure applied by a wire, elastic, or some other source. Pressure creates inflammation in the tissues around the teeth and that’s what makes you sore. If your teeth aren’t getting sore, they aren’t moving.

Whether or not you need an expander, extractions, or other auxiliary (rubber bands, springs, etc.) is determined by your individual teeth, jaws, bite, and profile, not by which bracket your orthodontist buys. Braces are just a tool. Your teeth don’t know if your braces were made by Damon, GAC, American, or Unitek. They only recognize force and move when it is applied. The company that makes Damon does not have a special agreement with your teeth so that their braces will straighten your teeth any faster. Even though there is less friction with self-ligating brackets and you can go a few extra weeks between adjustments, research has not shown that this reduces your overall treatment time.

So why do I and so many other orthodontists use and love the Damon System? First, I love the look of the bracket. It is small, smooth, and comfortable. Second, I love that it provides consistent results no matter which of my staff members performs your adjustment. Whether my newest assistant or I myself put in your wire, if the slide on the Damon bracket is closed, both of us will achieve exactly the same movement. Third, I love that the amount of time it takes to change a wire in my clinic is faster and easier because of the self-ligating nature of the bracket. Fourth, I like that I can add and take away elastic hooks at any time during treatment which makes you more comfortable and makes it easier for you to brush and take care of your teeth. Fifth, I like that we can eliminate a few appointments during your treatment because the wires can continue moving teeth for a few extra weeks between visits. Sixth, compared to other self-ligating brackets, I just like the way the slide works, how easy it is to open, and how it doesn’t close on its own while I’m adjusting your wires.

So there you have it. Although I don’t believe that Damon braces are magical, my staff and I love them and use them on all our patients. I think the system is well thought out and does save clinic time and office visits for my patients and their families. If you’d like to know more about Damon braces and if they’re right for you, come see me or drop me a note. I think you’ll be impressed!

NOTE: The author, Dr. Greg Jorgensen, is a board-certified orthodontist who is in the private practice of orthodontics in Rio Rancho, New Mexico (a suburb on the westside of Albuquerque). He was trained at BYU, Washington University in St. Louis, and the University of Iowa in the United States. Dr. Jorgensen’s 25 years of specialty practice and 10,000 finished cases qualify him an expert in two-phase treatment, extraction and non-extraction therapy, functional orthodontics, clear aligners (Invisalign), and multiple bracket systems (including conventional braces, Damon and other self-ligating brackets, Suresmile, and lingual braces). This blog for informational purposes only and is designed to help consumers understand currently accepted orthodontic concepts. It is not a venue for debating alternative treatment theories. Dr. Jorgensen is licensed to diagnose and treat patients only in the state of New Mexico. He cannot diagnose cases described in comments nor can he select treatment plans for readers. Because he has over 25,000 readers each month, it is impossible for him respond to all questions. Please read all of the comments associated with each article as most of the questions he receives each week have been asked and answered previously. The opinions expressed here are protected by copyright laws and can only be used with written permission from the author.

153 comments so far in response to “Do Damon Braces Really Move Teeth Faster?”

  1. rj says:

    Thanks for taking out the time to help worried parents and all the selfless responses, Dr Jorgensen 🙂
    Best Regards

  2. Waqas Latif says:

    Dear Sir,
    I have just started my braces treatment from 8 January, 2016. My Doctor has used conventional brackets and fit steel band around my back teeth. And He just tell me your 2 premolars of upper jaw will be removed due to crowded teeth and also there is no adequate space for my tilt teeth to be straighten.
    Now i heard about demon braces. and I like it.
    Sir My Questions are
    1) Is demon braces works in teeth extraction cases. I mean will it fill empty space ?
    2) Can i move to demon braces Now ?
    3) If i can’t move to demon braces now, can I replace my back teeth steel bands with demon back teeth brackets which used for holding edges of wire ?

    • Damon braces are no different than the braces you already have. They are just braces. If you need teeth removed, it doesn’t matter what kind of braces you have. Don’t be fooled by the advertising. Damon braces are just like every other brand!

      • Waqas Latif says:

        Thank u sir for your informative reply.
        I just want to ask another question.
        1) I have orthodontic bands around my back teeth. Could it be replace with buccal tube means i saw some brackets which can be used at back teeth instead of orthodontic bands ?

        • It really depends upon what other “gadgets” the orthodontist may be planning to use. Bondable molar tubes are not strong enough for headgear or springs for example. Ask your orthodontist if you are a candidate.

  3. Barbara says:

    Hi Dr. Jorgensen,

    I got my braces put on last December, and have actually opted for Damon braces initially, however there was some miscommunication between the reception and my orthodontist and he put on the traditional ones for me and I didn’t know till a month later because he didn’t place any rubber bands for me for the first month, leading me to believe I had indeed, Damon braces on. I’m currently deciding if I should transit over to the Damon braces I had initially op-ed for, but am worried if there will be any long term or current issues occurring for switching over like this. Im currently experiencing slight receding gum line for the top row of teeth as well. Not sure if it is normal and part of the braces experience?

    Kindly advise please, much thanks in advance!

    • There will be no difference in the reaction of your teeth to the braces because of the brand name they are marketed under. Conventional braces do not cause receding gums any more than any other bracket. Don’t fall for the marketing hype.

  4. kate says:

    Hi Sir,
    is there any major difference between Damon and Damon Clear (besides the latter being plastic)?

    also, the size of each Damon bracket seems smaller than their clear counterparts, why is that so??

    thank you for your kind reply.

    • Both the Damon and Damon Clear are just brackets that have a little sliding door that holds the wire in place rather than a steel or rubber ligature tie. They would work exactly the same. There is no “magic bracket.” All brackets can move teeth exactly the same in the right hands.

  5. dr muhammad tayab khalily says:

    Dear dr Jorgensen i am appreciating your stamina that with so ethical way you satisfying the patients really it is a difficult job that with such a busy life you giving your precious time for guidance and comments. one my question which prescription of lingual braces like MBT Prescription thanks dr tayab

    • I use the GAC Innovation L brackets. The prescription isn’t important because the wires are custom made by Suresmile. The tips, torques, and angulations are customized for every individual patient.

  6. John says:

    Dear Dr. Jorgensen,

    I’m 56 and have been told I need to correct an overbite problem. I work in a very public profession and unfortunately will be entering the dating scene again and having braces that are less noticeable is important to me. I’ve have gotten two opinions. The first didn’t recommend clear braces due to problems with staining and said in the long run those will look worse than traditional braces. My research led me to a second orthodontist who uses damon brackets. Damon’s marketing indicates their clear brackets don’t stain and the second orthodontist says that is true. What are you’re findings in regard to staining with Damon Clear. Invisalign and lingual braces were ruled out by both orthodontists.

    I appreciate the honest answers you give in this blog.



    • There is mo difference between Damon brackets and any other bracket. I use Clarity Advanced brackets by Unitek and they don’t stain at all. What usually stains are the rubber bands that hold the wire in place. I would not hesitate using clear brackets on you. Don’t fall for the marketing!

  7. JG Charles says:

    Hi Dr. Jorgensen:
    Thanks for the great and very helpful blog!
    Question – I’m in my mid 50’s and had orthodontic work in my late teens – including extractions – long before self-ligating brackets were invented. My teeth have slipped over the years so I went to a local board certified orthodontist for a consultation – she was recommended to me by a friend who is a board certified periodontist. I had a really good consultation with her and she discussed my case in detail. She offered a choice of either Damon clear or Invisalign. She said that she ‘might’ get ‘slightly’ better results with the standard bracket system but that Invisalign was a very practical option as well. Because of my work, I prefer to keep the treatment fairly discrete, but don’t want to sacrifice quality results. Any advice?

    • I can’t make this choice for you, but in the right hands either clear brackets or Invisalign could produce good results. I personally prefer brackets because they give me more control. As for the comment about being treated before the invention of self-ligating brackets, self-ligation has nothing to do with the need to remove teeth or not. That is all marketing. Brackets are brackets. Period.

  8. Lindsey says:

    Dr. Jorgensen,

    I have searched the world (wide web) for an opinion/information on this so maybe you can help.
    I am one week into treatment with Damon Clear. My orthodontist has applied a bracket to a temporary crown. My regular dentist has the permanent crown ready to put on and is concerned about this issue. Would you see any reason for him to attach a bracket to the TEMPORARY crown besides maybe it was a mistake? It’s very obvious that it is a temp and it was discussed prior to initial banding. Just curious if this is a regular thing in general or are these brackets easily removable and reusable?

    Thanks in advance for your time.

    • In my office I would not have placed a bracket on a tooth that was getting a crown in the near future. Having said that, it is very easy to remove the bracket from the temporary and put a new bracket on the permanent crown after it is in place. This is not a big issue.

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