Interesting and Spectacular

during the course of the century


Braces 1970 until Today

Since 1970, teaching with fixed braces has been gradually reintroduced at German universities after decades of German orthodontics dogmatically restricting itself to removable braces. This had led to an increasing scientific isolation of German orthodontists. However, the after-effects of the “functional orthodontic” dogma world can still be felt among German orthodontists today, as many of them still think that they can “somehow” achieve better things for their young patients with removable braces than with fixed ones.

At the same time, US orthodontists have found that by using removable braces, they can retain patients earlier and longer in their practices, thus increasing treatment costs and boosting practice turnover. So the decision in favour of removable braces and early treatment in the US is overwhelmingly motivated by making more money. In this way, the nature and manner of orthodontic treatment have converged internationally in recent decades.

The professional development has been characterised by constant technical advancements, especially in fixed braces. Scientifically, we are witnessing the slow displacement of the earlier “schools” built on personal authority and rhetoric by an anchoring in evidence-based medicine that applies equally to all orthodontists. The quality of scientific articles has tended to improve in orthodontics, especially since the mid-1990s.


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