The Herbst Appliance

Assisting Jaw Growth Across Mississauga & Thornhill

Although orthodontic braces often come to mind when thinking of Thornhill & Mississauga orthodontics, Orthodontically Yours has a variety of treatment options for children and adults that assist every orthodontic problem from the minor to the severe. When a bite issue or tooth eruption problem interferes with everyday life, either in the form of conflicting with mouth movement or being teased by others, we’re happy to help find a solution to make our patients feel more confident and get their lives back to normal. Our Herbst appliance treatment is one option to help correct moderate to severe malocclusions in adolescents and adults. 

What Does the Herbst Appliance Do?


This type of treatment may be recommended for patients who experience a malocclusion such as the upper teeth protruding farther than the lower teeth. Just by appearance, it can look like this problem is caused by the upper jaw simply sticking out farther than the lower. In reality, the cause is often that the lower jaw is smaller and positioned farther back than normal. This is sometimes caused by the lower jaw simply not growing as fast as it should. In cases like this, we can attach the Herbst appliance to pull the lower jaw forward and allow it to catch up in growth with the rest of the facial structure. We can also use a Forsus appliance, which moves the lower arch forward while pushing the upper molars back. Treatment usually takes approximately one year to complete.

How Does It Feel?

The Herbst appliance attaches to both the lower and upper jaws, usually on the molars. The appliance is hinged so that the mouth can still open and close enough to speak and eat, although movement does take some getting used to. Patients should also be careful not to open their mouths too wide, as this can cause the appliance to come apart. Speaking is awkward at first, and the appliance can create a full feeling in the mouth. Initially, patients often create more saliva than normal. Practicing speaking through reading aloud and becoming accustomed to the appliance should help with saliva reduction and overcoming the awkwardness felt while talking.

H2: What Foods Should I Avoid While Wearing the Appliance?

As with many orthodontic appliances, it’s important to be careful and conscious about the foods you eat while wearing the Herbst appliance. We highly recommend that patients avoid these foods during treatment, as they can cause issues with the appliance leading to breaks.

  • Ice 
  • Ice slushies
  • Popsicles
  • Caramel
  • Gum
  • Suckers
  • Hard candies
  • Hard vegetables

If you eat any cold, hard, or sticky foods that cause problems with your appliance or lead to a break, it’s important to get in to see us as soon as possible. While treatment normally takes around a year, it can take longer if the appliance is continually breaking and patients do not come in to see us right away.

We’re Here to Help Every Step of the Way

Our mission is to help each Orthodontically Yours patient achieve a beautiful smile. Our Herbst appliance option is one treatment that can help adolescents and adults achieve normal facial structure to feel more confident in their appearance. Contact us to learn more about this and other treatment options today. You can call our offices at 905-820-6511 in Mississauga, or 905-763-9098 in Thornhill.