A good way to think about how the elastics work is to compare their use to pushing a car up a hill. If you stop pushing the car, it will roll back down and you lose what you have accomplished with earlier pushing. Teeth will move back the same way if you leave the elastics off. It is very important to have consistent and steady push on the teeth to get the job done.
The elastics should be used all of the time, day and night, to keep an even pressure on the teeth, unless the doctor has told you otherwise. They can be removed at meal time and for brushing your teeth but should be replaced immediately afterwards. You should change the elastic at least once a day since they lose their stretch after being in place for 24 hours. If for some reason you are not able to wear your elastics as prescribed by the doctor. STOP wearing them and call the office immediately. Do not double the elastics unless instructed to. This could add months onto your treatment time.
Remember, your teeth will not move without proper use of elastics! If you cooperate completely now in the use of your elastics, you will not only have a better result in the correction of your bite, but you could also be finished with your orthodontic treatment sooner.
If you ever run out or lose your elastics, please stop by the office to pick up more or call us at the office and we will mail them to you.