If an orthodontist recently removed your braces, they will likely recommend and fit you for a retainer. A retainer is a custom-made appliance that will help your teeth and bite maintain the treatment your braces provided. If you’re anticipating the switch, the following four questions and answers will ensure you get the most out of this solution.
4 Common Questions About Retainers
1. How Long Do You Have to Wear It?
The amount of time you will wear the retainer depends on how extensive the treatment was, but most orthodontists agree you’ll need to wear it 12-22 hours a day for the first year after taking the braces off. After that, you’ll typically need to wear it three to five times a week for the rest of your life. This will help your teeth remain straight and your bite in the proper position.
2. What Happens if You Don’t Wear It?
It’s important to stick to the schedule your orthodontist recommends for retainer usage, or you may experience problems with your teeth or bite. Not wearing the retainer for several days can cause your teeth to shift and the issues you had before the treatment to reoccur.
3. Is there a time you should not wear it?
You can safely wear your retainer during most hours of the day, including bedtime. However, you should remove it when brushing your teeth, eating, snacking or drinking a beverage that could stain your retainer. Remember to carry a case with you to safely store your retainer in when not being worn. This will help you avoid losing it or accidentally throwing it out.
4. How do you care for it?
Cleaning and maintenance is an important part of using a retainer. Remember to brush your teeth after snacking and rinse out the device with warm water. Your orthodontist may recommend a special brush or solution to help preserve it.
For more than 20 years, the professionals at Mosling Orthodontics have provided the Wisconsin Coulee Region with affordable, specialized orthodontic services to correct and improve smiles. The orthodontist, Dr. Mosling, works closely with patients from initially placing braces to creating the retainer after treatment. To learn more about them and the services they offer, visit online, or call 608-782-1950 to schedule a visit.