Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Oral Biology


Dental Medicine

First Committee Member

Marcia Ditmyer, Chair

Second Committee Member

Connie Mobley

Third Committee Member

Cliff Seran

Graduate Faculty Representative

Susan VanBeuge

Number of Pages




The purpose of this study was to compare perceptions of efficacy and efficiency of Self-Ligating Brackets vs. conventional brackets between practicing Orthodontists and Orthodontic Residents.


Cross-sectional survey research using a three-wave emailing of addresses from the current American Association of Orthodontists directory. The directors of all orthodontic residency programs in the US were asked to also distribute to all residents. The survey included five sections: (1) respondents' experience, (2) factors that influence, (3) positive or negative factors, (4) the perceived efficiency/efficacy, and (5) demographics. A 39% response rate (N=707) was obtained.


Over half (51.8%) stated using self-ligation in their practice. Non-board certified orthodontist (57.1%) reported using self-ligation more often than board certified orthodontists at 46.2%. The two most common systems used were GAC Innovation-R (52.7%) and Damon (50.3%). Of the advantages cited, the most common was decreased chair time (64.3%). Most (71.7%) felt negatively about the price of self-ligating brackets, and increased difficulty finishing cases (62.4%). Due to low response rate from residents, no comparison could be made between orthodontists and orthodontic residents.


While this project answered questions about use of self-ligating brackets, it is still uncertain the motivating factors of orthodontists of their use of self-ligation. Self-ligation has seen a growth in the number of products available, and the amount of doctors using this technology in the last two decades. While there are still an increasing number of practitioners that are using self-ligation, there are still many practitioners who choose conventional brackets over self-ligation.


Brackets; Damon; Health and environmental sciences; Orthodontic appliances; Orthodontics; Orthodontists; Residents (Medicine); Self-ligating


Dental Materials | Dentistry | Orthodontics and Orthodontology