The retention phase of treatment comes after tooth movements have been completed by your braces, aligners, or other orthodontic appliances. Compliance with our recommended retainer wear schedule is extremely important if you are to protect your hard work and investment made during your active treatment.
Here are answers to some common questions about retainers:
1) How long do I have to wear my retainers?
Everyone is different in this regard, depending on the length of your treatment and tendency for relapse. Please follow the specific wear instructions given to you. No matter what treatment you’ve had, retention is a lifetime commitment, similar to brushing your teeth. However, unlike brushing, we don’t expect that you will need to wear your retainers every night forever. Your wear will taper according to your specific situation.
2) I know people who had braces years ago and were told that they no longer need their retainers. Why am I different?
You’re not. Look carefully at their teeth. Are they perfectly aligned? Probably not. We want you to always look as good as the day your treatment was completed.
3) I was given temporary retainers. What do I do with them after the permanent retainers are fitted?
Hang on to them - they may make excellent emergency retainers.
4) Do I need to bring my retainers with me to future appointments?
Yes. We need to assess their fit and function at each appointment and make adjustments as necessary.
6) How do I keep my retainers clean?
Brush your retainers each time you brush your teeth. Water alone or mild soap and water are recommended. Toothpaste can dull the finish of your retainer. If calcium is depositing on your retainer, soak the retainer for a few hours using a cleaning tablet such as Retainer Brite, or in a solution of white vinegar.
7) How do retainers break?
Each of our retainers is custom-made in a professional lab to exacting standards. However, a retainer may break if it is forced into place after the teeth have moved as a result of not wearing it as prescribed. Dogs love to chew retainers. A retainer is easily crushed if not kept in the case when not being worn. Hot air or hot water will distort a retainer.