Dental Braces from 1970 to the Present Day

Since 1970, teaching involving fixed braces has gradually been re-introduced into German universities, after German orthodontics had for decades dogmatically confined itself to removable braces. This had led to an increasing scientific isolation of German orthodontics. But the effects of the so-called ‘functional orthodontics’ dogma can still be felt amongst German orthodontists today, because many of them still believe that they can do more for their patients using removable braces than they can with fixed braces.

At the same time US orthodontists have realised that those patients whom they treat with removable braces can be tied to their practices for longer thus inflating the treatment costs and increasing the turnover of the practice. So, over the past few decades, the various forms of orthodontic treatment in use internationally have converged. The development of the profession has been characterized above all by continuous technical advancement in respect of fixed braces. From a scientific point of view, we are now experiencing the gradual suppression of those earlier schools based on personal authority and rhetoric, as a result of an effective anchoring in evidence-based medicine for all orthodontists. The quality of scientific articles, particularly since the mid-nineties, has gradually improved.