How big an archwire can we place today? Who is the person in the best position to know? Have you ever considered the question? I used to think that I was the ONLY person qualified to make these decisions because that’s what I was told in school. However, the reality I have come to discover is very different.

Who puts in archwires all day, every day? Not me.

Who has the most experience knowing if a given wire will engage that rotation or discrepancy without breaking the bracket? Not me.

Why do we insist on making these decisions alone when we have valuable council available? Doesn’t it make sense to ask the chairside clinicians what wire size they think would be best in any given situation or to, at least, ask for input as to the feasibility of placing the wire we select?

Pride is expensive and in this case pride can lead to broken brackets, wasted time and frustration for the patient, you and the assistant. Asking for input is not abdication of your responsibly or admission of weakness. It is the opposite. Utilizing all the resources at your disposal to get the best possible result for the patient is not only advisable it is mandatory!