Retainers are used as a part of orthodontic treatment to hold the position of the teeth. They are often used after braces or Invisalign have been removed in order to preserve the results and keep teeth from shifting back to their previous positions. Whether you are the patient or the parent of a patient, here’s what you should know about retainers.
Wearing Your Retainers After Getting Your Braces Removed is Crucial
Braces are used to move teeth into proper alignment. They apply a great amount of pressure to push and pull teeth in the right direction. After the braces are removed it is normal for teeth to try and shift back to their previous positions. Retainers keep this from happening, holding your teeth in the correct position while your gums and jaw bone solidify around the teeth. You will typically have two retainers, one for the top teeth and one for the bottom teeth.
Forgetting to wear your retainers could cause you to lose all the progress you made while you were wearing your braces. In some cases, not wearing your retainers enough can make it necessary to get your braces put back on.
Timeframe for Wearing Your Retainers
After a while you may only need to wear your retainers at night while you’re sleeping. Most orthodontists recommend that you never stop wearing your retainers at night to ensure your teeth don’t shift away from the proper position.
Caring for Your Retainers
Taking proper care of your retainers mainly includes keeping them clean and safe. You will receive a case to keep your retainers in when you’re not wearing them. If you keep them in the case you can avoid losing them when you take them out.
Keeping your retainers clean involves brushing them with your toothbrush and mouthwash or water just as you do your teeth.
Retainers Can Make Corrections to Your Teeth
If any additional small corrections need to be made to your teeth following braces, your retainers can often be adjusted in order to take care of that. Sometimes one tooth may shift or a slight gap may develop that your retainer can easily correct. If you notice any issues with your teeth between checkups, call your orthodontist to explain the problem. They may ask you to come in sooner than your regularly scheduled appointment.
What to Do if You Lose your Retainers
Unfortunately, retainers do get lost sometimes. They can be accidentally thrown away, dropped, or just get lost. In the unfortunate event that you permanently misplace your retainers, call your orthodontist right away. You’ll need to have a replacement retainer made as soon as possible to prevent your teeth from shifting.
Need an Orthodontist? Visit the Professionals at Brace-Asaurus
Orthodontic care for children can begin as early as 7 years old and continue through adulthood. A range of treatments may be used to align the teeth and bite to ensure a lifetime of healthy teeth, proper chewing, and beautiful smiles.
Call Brace-Asaurus today at 203-281-1022 to schedule a free first-time consultation. Dr. Desai will evaluate your teeth and recommend the best course of treatment.