When we remove your braces, we will begin the retention stage of your treatment. The retention phase lasts for a minimum of 24 months, but we believe that retention should be valued for a lifetime. Your final orthodontic result depends on your retainers, so follow through with the hard work you’ve put in so far. Remember to remove your retainer before brushing, and brush your retainer before placing it back in your mouth.
Bonded lingual retainers are cemented directly to the inside surface of your lower canines (eye teeth). This is one of the best ways to prevent your lower teeth from shifting as it is permanently attached! Patients with bonded lingual retainers must be careful with their bite as the bonding material may break due to incorrect biting and cause teeth to shift quickly. As with removable retainers, it is important to keep them clean. When brushing, make sure to carefully clean the inside of your lower teeth as well as the wire.
The Spring Retainer is an aligner that serves dual functions. First, it is an appliance for active orthodontic treatment that is effective in aligning crowded teeth. Secondly, it serves as a post-treatment retainer, to keep the aligned teeth in place.
Made by constructing a model of your teeth, the spring retainer includes a wire spring that gives the appliance/retainer the flexibility to fit properly. You may experience some soreness while wearing the retainer – this means that the retainer is working. Remove the retainer to eat, drink and clean it.
Once the retention phase has ended, the appliance can be used as a guide to check the teeth and assure that no relapse has occurred. If movement does occur after a patient completes his or her retention phase, a nighttime retainer will be recommended indefinitely.
The Essix retainer is a transparent removable retainer that fits over the entire arch of teeth. Similar to Invisalign® trays, Essix retainers have no wires. They are inexpensive and easier to wear. They can be used for other treatments as well, including tooth movement and bridges.
Maxillary wrap-around retainers are your upper retainers, which are removable. You must be very careful when handling your upper retainers, as they are fragile and costly to replace. You are given a special case for your retainer; please make sure you keep them in this case when not wearing it! To clean these retainers, brush them with toothpaste (sometimes with denture cleaner) using warm water.
Your retainers should be worn at all times with the exception of eating and brushing your teeth. Your retainer should also be removed when participating in sports that require a mouth guard or while swimming. After 12 months of full-time wear, we may revise your retention treatment, allowing the retainer to strictly be worn at night.
Your final orthodontic result depends on your retainers, so follow through with the hard work you’ve put in so far.