If you’ve been wearing a brace for weeks, months or even years, the last thing you want is for all your hard work and dedication to go to waste, and this is why we recommend that all our orthodontic patients wear retainers.
What exactly is a retainer?
A retainer is a custom-designed orthodontic appliance, which is designed to hold the teeth in position once the brace has been removed. Braces use forces to gently guide the teeth into a new positon, and if you take them off and then leave the teeth alone, this may result in the teeth slipping slightly and starting to move. A retainer holds the teeth, preventing relapse and ensuring your smile continues to look flawless for years to come.
There are different types of retainer available, including removable and fixed appliances. Your dentist can talk you through the options and make recommendations based on the kind of treatment you had and your orthodontic prescription.
Why is it so important to wear a retainer?
Many people choose to have braces because they’re unhappy with the appearance of their smile. If you have crooked, crowded or misaligned teeth or there are gaps between your teeth, this may affect your confidence, as well as increasing the risk of dental health issues and speech problems. Braces are used to straighten the teeth and correct misalignment issues, but the hard work doesn’t stop when you have your braces removed. Retainers represent the next stage of treatment and they help to prevent the teeth from moving. If you don’t wear retainers, there’s a risk of the teeth slipping out of position and you may end up needing further treatment.
If you have questions or queries about retainers or you’d like to learn more about what happens after you have your braces taken off, our friendly dentists will be happy to help.