After the active orthodontic treatment period is complete and your braces have been removed, you will be given a retainer. This marks the beginning of the retention phase, during which a retainer is used to hold teeth in their new positions while the jawbone, gums and muscles adapt. You must wear the retainer as instructed, otherwise your teeth may revert to their former positions, and the benefits of having had braces will be lost.
When to Wear Your Retainer
Wear your retainer every night or as prescribed by Dr. Weeks, for as long as you want straight teeth!
Pain and Soreness
The retainer may make your teeth sore and you may even find that your speech is slightly altered for a few days. This is normal with a new retainer or after an adjustment and will resolve on its own. If you develop a sore spot on your gums, call our office so that we can adjust the retainer for better comfort.
Cleaning Your Retainer
Brush your retainer daily with water and a toothbrush. If needed, denture cleaner can be used for a more thorough cleaning. If you have a bonded wire retainer behind your lower teeth, be careful to clean it as well when brushing your teeth. Do not boil your retainer or place it in hot water, as it can ruin the material.
How to Keep Your Retainer Safe
Because the retainer is removable, it can be taken out. However, careful care should be taken not to lose your retainer. When removing your retainer, be sure to keep it in its case for safety. Never wrap the retainer in a napkin or store it in your pocket. Keep it away from dogs and cats, as they love to chew on these appliances. Please note: an additional charge will be incurred for lost or broken retainers.