Congratulations on completing your braces treatment! When you have finished straightening your smile, our orthodontists will provide you with retainers to keep your teeth in their proper positions and prevent them from shifting back into their pre-treatment alignment. Please follow all instructions and recommendations for wearing your retainers as closely as possible. To make your appointment with Dr. Damon DeArment, Dr. Daniel Lill, and Dr. Ashley Larson and learn more about retainers in Winchester and Front Royal, Virginia, please contact our practice.
Retainers work by helping the bone around your teeth to reorganize and solidify so that it will hold your teeth firmly in their new positions. We provide both upper and lower retainers. The upper retainer is removeable, and should be worn full-time until our orthodontists instruct you otherwise. Your lower retainer is permanent, and you may wear it for years – in fact, some of our team members have had their braces off for more than 15 years and still have their lower permanent retainers!
Here are a few helpful tips for using retainers:
- Wear your retainer full time. This will help keep your new smile in place. Plus, when your retainers are in your mouth they will not get lost, be damaged, or thrown away by accident.
- Your teeth may be sore for the first few days of wearing retainers. You can take a mild pain reliever, such as Ibuprofen or Tylenol as needed.
- Keep your retainers in a protective case when you are not wearing them. Also keep the case in a safe place, as your dog or cat may take the entire case!
- Clean your retainers regularly. You can clean them with toothpaste and a toothbrush, or with Retainer Brite. Do NOT boil your retainer, as heat will cause the plastic material to distort and ruin the appliance.
- Try not to grind your teeth. Retainers are not designed to prevent tooth grinding. If holes or cracks begin to appear, we may discuss providing you with some kind of night guard in place of your retainer.
- If your retainer is lost or broken, call our office immediately so that we can fit you for a new retainer. This is especially important if you have gotten your braces off recently. Please be aware that there is a replacement charge for lost and broken retainers.
- Practice good oral hygiene to ensure that your mouth remains healthy while wearing your retainer.
- Visit your general or family dentist regularly for cleanings and exams to help maintain your beautiful smile.
For more information about retainers, please contact Shenandoah Valley Orthodontics today.