Placing an open-coil spring over an archwire can be tricky: the spring can pop the wire out of bracket slots before ligation, and compressing the spring with the fingers is cumbersome, especially in the posterior regions. To eliminate these problems, I have designed a device that holds the spring in place until the archwire is ligated. The procedure is as follows:
1. Form a helix in a 3cm segment of .017" .025" stainless steel wire and bend each end into a hook. Close the helix of the spring so that the legs form an acute angle (A). Sterilize this spring holder before the patient's appointment.
2. Place an open-coil spring over the archwire at the desired location.
3. Engage one of the hooks of the spring holder over the archwire at one end of the spring, closing the hook gently with a plier to prevent it from sliding on the wire (B).
4. Compress the coil spring and engage the second hook to the wire at the other end of the spring (C).
5. Ligate the archwire in the patient's mouth as usual (D).
6. Carefully open the spring-holder hooks one at a time, releasing the compressed spring between the brackets (E).
This simple device is inexpensive, easily fabricated, and reusable. It can be employed in any area of either arch.