What are Retainers and Why You Should Wear Them

Retainers cannot be considered as orthodontic appliances because they don’t move the teeth. However, they are used in nearly all cases to prevent the teeth from moving after removing the braces.

Why you need retainers

Nearly all patients who have undergone orthodontic treatment have to wear the retainer to keep their teeth straight. If they don’t wear the retainer, their teeth can become misaligned all over again. Generally speaking, you should receive orthodontic treatment only if you are ready to wear retainers after removing the braces.

Why you should wear retainers

They are mainly two reasons.

  • Teeth have a tendency to go back to their original position. Orthodontists call this relapse.
  • When people grow older, their teeth may begin to move unpredictably. This can also lead to crossing over.

When you wear retainers for a long term, you can prevent these age changes from spoiling your smile. If you wear retainers for several years, you will be able to keep your teeth in their correct position for many more years.

Retainers are fitted after removing the braces. While some retainers are removable, others are fixed onto the teeth. Several different kinds of retainers are available. A good orthodontist will help you choose the right option for you.

The most common types are vacuum formed retainers and bonded retainers.

Vacuum formed retainers

These are clear retainers that a person can wear part-time. While wearing this retainer, you can’t eat or drink. When you first wear it, you may experience some discomfort because the retainer grips the teeth, but you will soon get used to it.

Bonded retainers

These retainers are fixed onto the teeth. Bonded retainers are not visible because they are hidden behind your teeth. They are worn full-time. But you have to be careful while cleaning around the retainer. Also, you will need to seek advice if it gets loose.

Hawley retainer

This retainer can be removed later. It has a plastic part which fits in the palate behind your upper teeth. They also have a metal wire that runs across the front teeth.

While wearing the retainer, follow the instructions of your orthodontist carefully.

At Braces America, we have highly qualified orthodontists who can provide the care and advice you need to keep your teeth straight after removing the braces. Call us today to book an appointment.