Image Number 3 for United States Patent #7585171.
The present invention provides designs for a self-ligating orthodontic bracket. According to one embodiment, the self-ligating orthodontic bracket includes a mounting base for attachment to a tooth surface, an archwire slot formed upon the base and sized for receiving an orthodontic archwire, a rotary ligating cover selectively rotatable between an open position permitting access to the archwire slot and a closed position covering the archwire slot, and one or more locking features for holding the rotary ligating cover in a closed position. In one embodiment, the bracket includes one or more locking tabs on the rotary ligating cover aligned in coplanar relation to the rotary ligating cover and cooperatively mating with cutout portions in the base. In one embodiment, the bracket includes at least one resilient retention mechanism adjacent to the one or more locking tabs and aligned in coplanar relation to the rotary ligating cover. The resilient retention mechanism may include one or more relief channels permitting flexing of at least portions of the rotary ligating cover adjacent to the one or more locking tabs.