Importance Of Wearing Retainers Following Orthodontic Treatment
After wearing braces for many months, there is nothing more exciting than the day that braces are removed. We love to see our patients smiling from ear to ear, eager to show off their beautiful new smiles. Even though our patients are excited to show off their new smiles, it is important to understand that the journey to straight teeth is not over yet. There is still another device needed to help the teeth remain in beautiful condition—the retainer.
What is a Retainer?
A retainer is a piece of orthodontic hardware that is customized for each patient using custom images and impressions of the newly straightened teeth. A retainer is meant to help the muscles and tissue in the mouth hold the teeth and help them set in their new place. After going through many months of wearing braces, caring for your teeth, and dealing with discomfort, the last thing we want our patients to experience is their teeth shifting out of place. While a retainer will not need to be worn continuously for the rest of your life, it is especially important immediately after braces are removed. Our office provides specific instructions on how long to wear the retainer each day. As time progresses, the length of time the retainer needs to be worn will decrease.
How to Care For a Retainer
It is extremely important to properly care for your retainer as it accumulates bacteria from sitting in your mouth all day and night. The care for the retainer is similar to that of how you care for your teeth. We suggest:
- Cleaning the retainer with toothbrush and toothpaste
- Do not eat with your retainer in your mouth
- Store the retainer in the case when not being used
If you have any questions about how to care for your retainer, what to do if your retainer breaks or you lose your retainer, contact our office located in Kewaskum, WI as soon as possible. We want to be sure that your teeth remain straight as an arrow!