Retainers And Orthodontic Retention: The Next Steps After Braces
The Importance Of Orthodontic Retention: Why Retainers Are Necessary
Studies have shown that using retainers increases the efficacy of most orthodontic treatments. These oral appliances make sure your teeth don’t go back to their original position after they’re realigned.
To guarantee long-lasting results, we highly recommend our comprehensive orthodontic retention program at Dugas Dental & Carr Orthodontics. As soon as your braces are removed, we provide a custom set of retainers for each of our patients.
The Different Types Of Retainers
The retainer you need depends on your personal preferences and your orthodontist’s recommendations. There are three types of orthodontic retention appliances you can choose from:
Traditional retainers, also called Hawley wire retainers, have a metal wire that sits at the front of the teeth, keeping them in place. The entire appliance is attached to an acrylic arch placed against the roof of the mouth. This type of retainer may feel uncomfortable and bulky in the mouth, so we recommend removing it during meals and sleep.
Invisible retainers fit seamlessly over the arches of your teeth, making them popular among patients that want a more aesthetic alternative to traditional wired retainers. Removable clear aligners offer the same alignment benefits without compromising your smile’s appearance.
These retainers are attached to the top or bottom of teeth using a special bonding agent. But instead of placing the metal wire in front, they’re placed behind your teeth, hiding the wire. There are some downsides to this type of retainer, including broken wires and difficulty cleaning.
The Pros & Cons Of Orthodontic Retainers
Similar to most orthodontic procedures, retainers come with benefits and downsides. Your orthodontist will walk you through the entire process to help you properly maintain your retainers and minimize discomfort.
What Are The Benefits Of Using Retainers?
Retention is the final phase of orthodontic treatments. If you follow the regimen as instructed, you’ll experience the following long-term benefits:
- Improved shape and alignment of your smile
- Reduced risk of shifting or misaligned teeth
- Overall improved functionality for eating and chewing
What Are The Challenges Of Using Retainers?
Depending on the type of retainers you get, you may experience some difficulties during the adjustment period. But compared to their benefits, most patients believe that these minimal inconveniences are worth the trouble. Here are some of the challenges you can expect from each type of retainer:
- Removable retainers: Patients using removable retainers may forget to put them back in after removal. When this happens, it’s really easy to lose removable retainers.
- Clear retainers: Clear retainers can’t withstand hot temperatures, so you need to remove them during meals. They’re also not as durable as metal retainers.
- Fixed retainers: Fixed retainers can be difficult to clean because they’re located behind your teeth.
Are Retainers Mandatory After Getting Braces?
Yes! It takes time before your teeth completely settle into their new alignment. Without retainers, you risk losing months of progress.
Get Professional Orthodontic Retention At Dugas Dental & Carr Orthodontics
Wearing retainers can help you maintain the results of your orthodontic treatments. For the best orthodontic retention, you can trust Dugas Dental & Carr Orthodontics. Contact us and make the most out of your smile!