Understanding Orthodontic Retainers and Their Significance After Braces

Understanding Orthodontic Retainers and Their Significance After Braces

Oct 02, 2020

Orthodontic treatments are relatively long dental procedures that require dedication and patience. Apart from wearing metal braces, you will need to maintain the results of the treatment. Therefore, your dentist in Kansas,City might recommend additional devices such as orthodontic retainers.

Orthodontic retainers are custom devices that keep your teeth in position after removing dental braces and Invisalign®. Your dentist recommends the orthodontic retainers after removing braces to ensure your teeth are in position after correcting misalignment.

Types of Retainers

Dental retainers can either be fixed or removable. Therefore, before deciding on which orthodontic retainers you need, Dr. Dishani Shah will consider the condition of your teeth and your preferences.

Fixed Retainers

Fixed retainers consist of a thin wire that your dentist places across you’re the lingual surface of your upper and lower front teeth. The thin wire stretches across several teeth, thus you will need to take care of your teeth just as you did with braces.

Removable Retainers

Removable orthodontic retainers are similar to invisible aligners. Our dentist recommends these orthodontic retainers since they are easy to wear and remove according to the instructions. With removable retainers, you can practice good oral hygiene without any limitations.

You will have to wear your retainers for at least 20 hours a day for the first 12 months. Once the dentist detects no movements on your teeth, you will only have to wear them when sleeping.

Since these orthodontic retainers are removable, they are prone to damage or loss. Therefore, you should handle them with care. If you lose your orthodontic retainers, you might need a replacement immediately, to ensure you get the desired results.

Reasons to Wear Orthodontic Retainers

The reasons you need to wear orthodontic retainers after braces include the following:

Stabilizing the Bite

After removing braces, your bone and some soft tissues will need sometime to adapt to some of the changes in the positioning of your teeth. Orthodontic retainers work by stabilizing your teeth in their new positions. Also, the retainers ensure that shifting and elapse of the teeth from the new positions is minimal.

To ensure the orthodontic retainers are optimally effective, our dentist at Smile Palace recommends you wear the retainers for 12-20 hours a day.

Proper Spacing for the Wisdom Teeth

Orthodontic treatments are popular among teenagers and preteens. Sometimes, all their teeth might not have erupted, especially wisdom teeth. Therefore, the child will have to wear the braces or Invisalign without the last molars present.

By following the right instructions as instructed by the dentist, your child can wear orthodontic retainers and provide space for the eruption of the last molars. Wearing retainers regularly also prevents crowding or shifting of the teeth to the back.

Holding Your Teeth in Their New Positions

When you get braces to correct gapped, misaligned teeth, or overbites, it might take a long time to stabilize them. Therefore, you will require to hold them in place even after removing the braces.

By wearing orthodontic retainers, your teeth will retain their position since they hold them firmly on your jaw. The orthodontic retainers also help your teeth adapt to the changes in positions.

Corrects Speech Impediments

Do you have a problem with pronouncing some words due to teeth placement?Braces&retainers can help restore your speech. Apart from speech impediments caused by teeth placement, the retainers can correct ones caused by tongue thrusts. In such a case, your dentist will recommend a special retainer known as a tongue cage.

Help in Avoiding Reversal Treatments

Sometimes your teeth tend to get back into their initial positions after removing the braces. However, with orthodontic retainers, you can prevent the shifting of the teeth to their original positions. Therefore, your dentist asks you to regularly wear the retainers for a few months after removing the braces.

Keeping Your Retainers Clean

By cleaning your retainers, you protect your teeth from infections and enhance their lifespan.

When cleaning fixed retainers, you will have to do it as you clean your teeth. Therefore, you will have to brush regularly and floss using a flossing-thread.On the other hand, removable retainers need removing and cleaning them using lukewarm water. Also, rinsing your retainer when wet with saliva prevents the sticking of food.