After months of wearing braces, having your teeth shift out of place again is a distressing thought.
A custom retainer can ensure the results of your orthodontic treatment last for years to come.
So why should you wear a retainer?
When Worn Properly, Retainers Can Keep Your Teeth Straight for a Lifetime
Your teeth are at the greatest risk for relapse for the first 30 days after braces have been removed. If your teeth shift, it can take 12 months to realign them. Retainers maintain your results so you can avoid a second round of braces.
Experience better chewing.
Keeping your teeth straight after braces ensures you maintain a healthy bite. Individuals with straight teeth are able to chew their food better, which improves nutrition and prevents cavities.
Maintain a healthy smile.
Straight teeth are easier to keep clean and healthy. Without a retainer, your teeth will likely drift back to their original position, which increases the risk of oral health issues.
So what does a retainer look like?
The Long-Term Benefits of a Straight Smile
*Cited from a study by Kelton Research, LLC
Maintaining your results after braces can provide lasting effects for your social life as well as your oral health.
Retainers keep your smile beautiful.
But I already paid for braces I don’t want to spend more money
Retainers are usually included as part of the overall braces fee. Some dentists will even include the cost of one or two replacement retainers in the standard braces package. However, if you or your child loses or breaks their device, a removable retainer only costs about $150 to $300.
Check out how retainers work.
How long do I need to wear my retainers?
Usually, retainers are worn for as long as you had braces. For the first month, the risk of your teeth relapsing and moving back to their original position is very high. It can take up to a year for your teeth to completely stabilize.
However, your teeth can still drift out of place and affect the symmetry of your smile even after the first year. As a result, many adults wear their retainers long after their treatment finishes. If you keep wearing it, your retainer can maintain a healthy, straight smile for a lifetime.
Not sure if a retainer is right for you?
Try a Modern Retainer Option
While many patients think of the old school plastic and wire retainers, there are many options available for maintaining your results after braces. Permanent retainers consist of thin metal wires bonded to the back of your teeth. With this type, no metal shows on your newly straightened smile. Another option is an Essix retainer, which is made from transparent, plastic-like material. This nearly invisible retainer fits comfortably over the top of your teeth and holds them in place without wires.
You went through a lot to straighten your smile with braces. Now you can make your results last with a custom dental retainer.