As the big day approaches to get ones braces on, there is usually a quick step that precedes that appointment. With modern technology, the newer braces can be made in small dots making them much more esthetic. These are bonded to the teeth by etching the enamel surface with acid. However, the molar teeth bear quite a bit of brunt of the bite, so bonding brackets onto those teeth can be frustrating because they can become debonded under normal chewing. Thus, many times it is helpful to go back to the old style bands for those molars. To seat the bands comfortably, there needs to be a small gap between the teeth. Therefore, separators must be placed ahead of time to create that space. A separator can be an elastic “donut” or a twisted wire. They are placed about a week before the big appointment. This will allow the bands to be slipped on with minimal fuss. They usually will make ones teeth sore for a day or two – nothing that a little ibuprofen wouldn’t take care of. But it is sure well worth it because otherwise, the bands would have to be forced on.