Functional Appliances

Most children with crowded teeth and bad bites have narrow jaws and underdeveloped lower jaws, which could be corrected with functional appliances. Functional appliances help correct the bone problems, while the tooth problems are corrected with the orthodontic braces.

The ideal age for the use of functional appliances is between ages seven and eleven, when the cooperation level is the highest. However, functional appliances can be utilized as early as age 4, if the upper jaw is too narrow and is having a negative effect on the child’s breathing and speech. Arch development (functional appliances) can also be used in adults to develop the arch to a more normal shape and size before applying the braces.

The use of functional appliances can reduce the time the child must wear fixed braces and also can reduce the need for the extraction of permanent teeth. Functional appliances develop the dental arches so that all the permanent teeth can erupt, which ensures an outstanding profile, broad smile and healthy jaw joints.

Please feel free to click on any of the Functional Appliances below for more information.

Twin BLock

This functional appliance consists of two bite blocks, upper and lower, which interlock at 70°. Twin Blocks™ are designed so the mandible is held in a protrusive postion. This appliance is ideal in cases with large overjets when the mandible is recessive.

This is a comfortable appliance to wear as patients rarely have problems speaking or eating with the appliance.

It can be used in combination with vertical elastics to correct deep overbite.

The activation of the midline screws assist with the transverse development. Since 80% of Class II malocclusions have deficient mandibles, the Twin Block™ is a must for the treatment of the majority of Class II cases for patients under age 11 who are good co-operators.


The new MARA™ (Mandibular Anterior Repositioning Appliance) is ideal for non-compliant patients with Class II skeletal malocclusions and deficient mandibles.

It is well tolerated by the patient since the attachments are soldered to stainless steel crowns on the first molars. It is a fixed-functional appliance that is worn 24 hours per day which virtually guarantees success.

The MARA™ appliance is the appliance of choice for patients over age 11. Since 70% of all malocclusions are Class II and the vast majority have deficient mandibles, this is the ideal fixed appliance for the treatment of Class II skeletal malocclusions.


The new Tandem™ appliance is ideal for Class III skeletal patients in mixed dentition who have retrognathic maxillas and normal mandibles.

The upper part is fixed and consists of a Maxillary Banded Hyrax Appliance with two hooks for Class III elastics mesial to the first primary molars.

The lower portion is similar to a removable splint with a lower bow which inserts into a Buccal tube in the acrylic in the area of the first permanent molars.

The lower bow has hooks for the Class II elastics. Correction of a Class III malocclusion in mixed dentition can minimize the possibility of orthognathic surgery.


This popular fixed functional appliance consists of an incisal ramp located lingual to the maxillary anteriors, connected to the maxillary first molar bands via two .050 connector wires.

Patients compliance is excellent and this appliance is ideal for mandibular advancement when the overjet is less than 4 mm. Deep overbite correction is made easier with the Rick-A-Nator and vertical elastics.

It dramatically improves the patient’s profile and health of the TMJ.

When worn in combination with a straight wire appliance, treatment time is significantly shortened.