Congrats! You’ve finally reached that magical time in your life where your braces come off! You may be thinking, now what do I do? Now that we’ve gotten your teeth right where we want them, we need to retain them, or in other words keep them right where they are so they don’t move back to where they started. You don’t want all that hard work to go to waste do you?
You will receive a pair of retainers, one for the upper arch and one for the lower arch. Each orthodontist will tell you how often you should be wearing them to keep your smile straight and beautiful. You need to wear them during the instructed time to make sure there is no shift. Here at Hudec dental, we want to make sure you know all the proper ways to care for your retainers and we want to answer as many questions for you as possible.
There are many different types of retainers
- There are Hawley retainers, which are made of some metal and acrylic
- There are clear essix retainers, which are completely clear aligners that fit perfect to your teeth and are hardly noticeable
- & lastly there are lingual bonded retainers. Those types of retainers are a thin piece of wire that gets bonded or “glued” into the back of your teeth to prevent movement.
Your orthodontist will be the one who you can discuss your retainer options with, he or she can give you the best option that suites you and your smile.
Retainer cases are your friend
- Why you may ask? This is because losing your retainer is very common thing most patients go through. One minute you sit them down on the counter and the next your dog Skip has it in his mouth and mauled into 1000 little pieces.
- When you aren’t wearing your retainer, the best advice we can give is to put it back into the case so you don’t lose it, because they can be costly to replace.
Cleaning your retainer
- Once your orthodontist gives you your new retainer, they will then go over how to properly clean and take care of that specific retainer.
- For removable retainers, you can brush them with water and a small dab of toothpaste and rinse they out with cold water or use effervescent cleaner.
- Permanent bonded retainers can be brushed like normal, but floss threaders (the ones you used during treatment) will still need to be used in order to floss those hard to reach areas behind your wire.
- If you have a removable retainer, you will want to remove the retainer when you eat or drink any liquids to not damage it
- If your retainer is lost of broken call our office immediately so your teeth do not shift.
- Make sure to clean your retainer daily so it does not change color or have left over sugar/foods in it, you don’t want any cavities.