The Begg technique was a fixed appliance technique developed by the Australian dentist Raymond Paul Begg in the 1950s.
Begg attended the Angle School of Orthodontics in the 1920s and started using the technique on his return to Australia. However, he found it ineffective in the treatment of dental crowding. He began experimenting with the extraction of the first premolars, the use of light forces to move teeth, round arch wires and began designing his own brackets which he introduced in 1933. The brackets were the first to use single round 0.016” wires.
In the 1940s Begg worked with the metallurgist A.J. Wilcock to develop a new type of wire called the Australian orthodontic wire. Begg’s work culminated in the introduction of his technique in 1956. The Begg technique used light wires, differential forces and loops bent into the arch wire. The teeth were treated in three phases – the first tipped and aligned the crowns, the second closed the extraction spaces and finally, in the third phase, the roots were rotated into an upright position.
The technique was effective in correcting large overbites and oversets, and the rapid closure of extraction spaces but those using it needed a large amount of skill to keep the movement of the teeth under control. Teeth could often look as though they had been overtipped during treatment and the bracket could not prevent the teeth from moving beyond their corrected position. It was also very time consuming as the arch wires needed a lot of complex wire beings and the construction of springs for individual tooth correction. Despite this the Begg technique was used all over the world with the first course being held in the UK in 1966. It immediately became popular in the UK and remained so until the pre-adjusted Edgewise bracket was introduced in the 1980s.