Retainers are a vital part of your treatment; without them your teeth will almost certainly move from their new straight position. Your teeth retain a memory of their old position and will always try to move back. They settle into their new position over the first few years after the braces are removed.
This will depend on how your teeth looked before starting treatment. As a general rule, you should wear your removable retainers full time for the first week and then throughout the night for a further 6 to 12 months. A fixed retainer can be kept in place for approximately 10 years. However, the only way to have permanently straight teeth is to wear retainers on a part-time basis for life.
Retainers are very close fitting and a great way to monitor your teeth after treatment. If your retainers start to feel tight, your teeth may be moving. Wear them full time for 24 hours to move them back into position. This can be uncomfortable but it is very important if you want to keep your teeth straight. If you wear your retainers for just a couple of nights per week, they should last for several years. If they get damaged, contact us as soon as possible. Do not wait for your next review appointment as your teeth may have already moved.
Retainers can either be removable or fixed to the teeth. You will be advised which retainer is most suitable for you, but commonly you will be given both. Removable retainers are just as important as the braces that straightened your teeth. If you do not wear your retainers as advised, it is likely that your teeth will move and this can be difficult to correct. Having a fixed retainer in place can help, but it will not stop the teeth from moving altogether.
Did you know that we offer care plans through Denplan?