When we remove your braces, we will begin the retention stage of your treatment. The retention phase lasts for a minimum of 24 months. Your final orthodontic result depends on your retainers, so follow through with the hard work you've put in so far. If you have a removable retainer, please remember to take it out before brushing, and brush your retainer before placing it back in your mouth.
We offer the following retainers:
Bonded lingual retainers are bonded to the inside of your front teeth. This is one of the best ways to prevent your front teeth from shifting. Because they are so effective, fixed retainers are the type that we use most often.
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 these fixed retainers 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, please do not adjust it yourself. Call us immediately to schedule an emergency appointment.
We sometimes prescribe a maxillary wrap-around retainer for upper teeth. It is a removable retainer made of a combination of metal wires and sturdy acrylic. This retainer is specially made from impressions of your teeth so that it fits snugly and comfortably in the roof of your mouth, while any wire or acrylic framing keeps your teeth in perfect position. The acrylic can also be personalized with a large number of colors and/or patterns.
You must be very careful when handling your upper removable retainer, as is fragile and costly to replace. You are given a special case for your retainer; please make sure you keep it in this case when not wearing it! To clean this retainer, brush it with toothpaste (sometimes with denture cleaner) using warm water.
Your removable retainer should be worn strictly as prescribed, but never while eating or brushing. It should be removed when participating in sports that require a mouthguard or while swimming. We may revise your wear schedule at your retainer check appointments, depending on how stable your teeth are. If you ever become unable to wear your retainer as prescribed, you should call the office immediately.
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 less expensive and easier to wear. They can be used for other treatments as well, including tooth movement and bridges.