Whether you’re thinking about orthodontic treatment, or currently undergoing treatment, you may be wondering, “Will I need to wear retainers after treatment?” The answer is yes, and here’s why. Getting straight teeth is only half the battle; the other half is keeping them straight, and that is where retainers come in.
Changes in tooth position are a lifelong and naturally occurring phenomenon, and to maintain the result created by your orthodontic treatment, retainers must be worn. While small changes after treatment concludes are normal, retainers prevent teeth from going back to their original positions.
Retainers are prescribed for two reasons: first, to allow the bone that holds teeth to rebuild after teeth have moved, and second, to maintain the healthy new positions of teeth after active orthodontic treatment ends. Your body changes your whole life, and your teeth change too.
Yes, there are two general kinds of retainers: removable (put in and removed by the patient) and fixed (placed and removed by the orthodontist). Both types of retainers hold teeth in their new positions after “active” orthodontic treatment is completed. This allows newly formed bone to mature around the teeth.
Two common removable retainers:
The orthodontist will teach you how to insert, remove and take care of a removable retainer.
A fixed retainer consists of a thin, custom-fitted wire that is bonded to the tongue-side of upper or lower teeth.
As long as you want to keep your teeth straight, many patients wear retainers nightly for life. Wearing retainers becomes part of your oral hygiene routine: brush and floss before bed, and wear retainers at night for a lifetime.
When you choose Dr. Lawless for orthodontic treatment, you can be assured that you have selected a highly skilled specialist. Orthodontists are experts in orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics – properly aligned teeth and jaws – and possess the skills and experience to give you your best smile.