Moving teeth is a relatively simple thing to do. Any gentle, continuous pressure from any source will cause tooth movement. Even a three year old with a simple device called a thumb can do it!
Using thin stainless steel or titanium wires and small elastics we apply a light pressure to the teeth which causes bone to resorb on one side and new bone to build up on the other side. You may notice that the teeth become a bit mobile and tender to bite on. This occurs because the buildup of new bone around the tooth is a slow process- like a fracture healing. This is also why you cannot speed up treatment; teeth can only be moved as fast as the body will allow.
Although it may be deceptively easy to move a tooth, moving all the upper and lower teeth into a normal bite (occlusion) in a child whose jaws are growing in varying amounts is a difficult and exacting feat. In our adult patients we have to deal with teeth that are worn and no longer ideal, perhaps missing teeth and bone that is less optimal for moving teeth.