The retention period is just as important as the active movement phase of your treatment process. Once the teeth have been moved into the desired position, a period of time is needed to stabilize the teeth so that the surrounding bone and soft tissues conform to your new dental alignment.
Except when eating, brushing, flossing or playing active sports, please wear your retainer at all times the first 3 months after your braces are removed. After that, you should wear your retainer only at night. Also, we recommend that you wear your retainer on a part-time basis indefinitely to maintain tooth alignment.
Keeping your retainer in a case will prevent loss or damage. Brush the retainer with cool water and soak it in dental cleanser or mouthwash periodically to keep it fresh. Never put it in hot water. If you cannot brush your teeth after eating, rinse off the retainer and place it back in your mouth or in your case. Call us right away if you break or lose your retainer. The charge for replacement or repair is relatively inexpensive compared to the investment you have made in your orthodontic care.
The retainers most commonly used are Maxillary and Mandibular clear invisible retainers, which are removable. On occasion a Hawley removable retainer may be used. You must be very careful when handling your retainers, as they are fragile and costly to replace. To clean these retainers brush them with water. Using warm water and soaking them in Listerine or a denture cleaner will keep them fresh and odor free. Please make sure you keep them in the case provided when not in your mouth.
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.
Your final orthodontic result depends on your retainers, so follow through with the hard work you’ve put in so far.
Bonded Lingual retainers are most commonly cemented directly to the inside surface of the lower front teeth from cuspid to cuspid (eye teeth). Sometimes a permanent bonded retainer behind the two upper front teeth is needed to prevent a space from opening. 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. Additional oral hygiene measures are required with fixed retainers to keep
your teeth and gum tissue healthy. 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.
If your retainer breaks at any time during treatment, please do not adjust it yourself. Call us immediately to schedule an emergency appointment.