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Self-ligating braces: a mood or a real innovation? 10 years of using the Low Friction Concept.

More than 15 years after introducing the self-ligating braces in France by Dr Dwight Damon, how many orthodontists are 100% self-ligating?
Some University and private continuing orthodontic education have incorporated this new technique; others have conserved the classical braces.
Nowadays, in the orthodontic market there is several kinds of self-ligating braces of different companies. See video Damon system on:

What about the percentage of orthodontists using self-ligating in France?

There are no official statistics or studies but in my opinion and after asking my provider, it depends on the geographical areas and the treatment fees:

  • About 30% of orthodontists are using only self-ligating braces
  • About 20% of orthodontists are using both self-ligating and classical braces
  • About 50% of orthodontists are using classical braces

There are two ways of using self-ligating braces:

  1. Conserving the classical technique of orthodontic treatment with classical anchorage systems: segmentation or straight wire: Ricketts, Alexander,…
  2. Using the complete Low Friction Concept (LFC) and optimizing its potentiality.

My orthodontic practice experience is of 19 years with classical braces and 10 years with self-ligating:

Why adopting the LFC?

For comfort of patient and practitioner, and for low friction teeth movements.

Does the LFC reduce treatment time?

Yes and no, depending on protocol of orthodontic treatment. Time reducing is not the first aim of LFC but it can contribute. Priority is given to quality of the treatment.

Does the LFC reduce premolar extractions?

Yes and no, depending of several factors: practitioner’s training, longtime experience, treatment protocol (if doing early treatments or not) and patient’s age.

Does the LFC reduce relapses?

No. Long-term stabilization anti-relapse phase is needed. We recommend 4D retainer: functional, sagittal, transverse and vertical. Retainer is needed in both children and adult treatments. Read Recidive and contention.

What are the main advantages of LFC during my last 10 years of orthodontic practice?

  1. Are you using self-ligating system?
  2. If yes what is the percentage: 100%- 50%- 20%?
  3. If not, why you do not use it?


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