The Herbst® appliance encourages lower jaw growth in a forward direction by pushing the lower jaw forward and holding it there for 10-12 months. Even though the Herbst® appliance prevents the lower jaw from moving backward, opening and closing movements should still occur easily, and patients rarely have problems learning to chew food with the lower jaw in this new position.
At first, your mouth will feel unusually full and speaking will be awkward. But if you practice reading or singing aloud, your ordinary speech will return quickly. You may also notice that your back teeth may not meet, but this will improve as you become accustomed to the appliance.
As with all kinds of braces, patients with a Herbst® need to be careful about what they eat. Sticky foods, such as caramels and bubble gum, will pull the braces away from the teeth. Hard foods like crisp vegetables and hard candies will bend and loosen the Herbst®. If at any time any part of the Herbst® feels loose, call the office right away.
We will check and adjust your Herbst® every 6-8 weeks. If you develop sore areas on the inside of your cheeks between visits, do not try to adjust the appliance yourself. Use the wax provided to you to help with comfort. If you are still having discomfort, call the office so that proper adjustments may be made.
Herbst® is a registered trademark of Dentaurum, Inc.