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What Types Of Retainers Are Available?

Posted on 9/11/2023 by All About Orthodontics
What Types Of Retainers Are Available?After removing braces, a retainer is crucial for maintaining the position of your teeth. Determining the best retainer type depends on your unique case. Our orthodontist will guide you in making this decision. The periodontal ligaments take approximately a year to stabilize and adapt to their new positions once the braces are removed. Therefore, following our orthodontist's instructions precisely and wearing your retainer as directed is essential.

Failing to wear your retainer as recommended can lead to teeth shifting and potential relapse, causing them to become crooked again or creating gaps between them. Consistency in wearing your retainer is essential to ensure the long-term stability of your newly aligned smile. Trust the expertise of our orthodontist and maintain proper retainer usage to safeguard the results of your orthodontic treatment. Retainers come in different types, as discussed below:

Removable Retainers

Removable retainers are available in metal or clear options. They offer the flexibility of being worn only at night. Unlike fixed retainers, you can easily remove these appliances at any time. One of the advantages of removable retainers is their ease of maintenance. Since they can be taken out, you can continue your regular oral hygiene routine without any modifications, using your toothbrush, toothpaste, and floss as usual. However, wearing these retainers may affect your speech temporarily.

Clear retainers, in particular, are a popular choice for individuals who can wear a retainer part-time and have a lower risk of teeth shifting. They provide a discreet appearance and are often preferred by those seeking a less noticeable option.

Fixed Retainers

Fixed retainers are composed of a metal wire bonded to the back surfaces of your front teeth, typically extending from one canine to the other. Unlike removable retainers, fixed retainers cannot be removed at home. Only our orthodontist has the expertise to remove the device from the office. Significantly, fixed retainers allow you to eat or speak comfortably.
After a few days of wearing a fixed retainer, you should no longer notice its presence, though it may require extra effort to keep clean compared to removable retainers. Following your orthodontist's instructions regarding retainer usage and maintenance is essential to ensure the long-term stability of your teeth after orthodontic treatment.
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