Teeth Retainers


What are retainers?

Retainers are the final stage of most orthodontic treatments. They are commonly used to maintain the position of your teeth after braces have been removed, as over time your teeth will shift back to their old position. Retainers may also be used for much more, even things like fixing some speech impediments. 

If your orthodontist has recommended it, then it is very important to use a retainer, otherwise you won’t be getting the most effective straightening treatment. When you will need to wear the retainers will differ from treatment to treatment. Some patients are advised only to wear their retainer overnight, while other patients have been advised to wear them much longer.

What types of retainers are available?

There are two types of retainers that may be used; removable and fixed retainers. Removable retainers can be taken out, and may only need to be worn at specific times. Fixed retainers are fitted to the back of your teeth and cannot be taken out – meaning you can never forget to put them in! Depending on what treatment you’ve had and your teeth, your orthodontist will make the final decision on which is best for your teeth. 

What is good retainer maintenance?

You will be advised on what maintenance is required to keep your retainer clean and functioning properly. It is important you follow these instructions, otherwise you could be damaging your retainer and introducing bacteria into your mouth. Fixed retainers will need regular check-ups to assure they are clean and free from debris, plaque, and cavities. Removable retainers can be cleaned at home with a regular denture cleaning solution or vinegar and water.

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