So you have just completed your treatment with braces or Invisalign aligners, and you’re already excited about your brand new smile. So, what’s next? Now your dentist will give you retainers to consolidate your treatment. Now, you may ask, “ what are retainers and how long do I need to wear them?” this blog answers all your questions! So continue reading to learn everything you need to know about orthodontic retainers. 

What are Retainers?

Retainers are removable or fixed appliances your dentist will give you once you have finished wearing braces or clear aligners. The purpose of orthodontic retainers is to complete your treatment and prevent your teeth from moving back to their previous positions. 

How Do Retainers Work?

Retainers are passive appliances; this means that unlike braces and clear aligners (the so-called active appliances) that exert pressure on the teeth and move them in the desired direction, retainers do not generate any force or cause tooth movement. Instead, they are simply placed over the teeth to prevent unwanted movement. 

What are Different Types of Retainers?

There are two main types of orthodontic retainers; removable and fixed. Removable retainers are shaped and designed just like clear aligners. However, they fit much less snuggly over the teeth and do not exert any pressure. On the other hand, fixed retainers are bonded to the inner sides of the teeth using metallic wire. These retainers can only be removed by your dentist. 

How Long To Wear Retainers?

The amount of time one needs to wear their aligners depends mainly on the severity of their initial orthodontic problem. The more severer an issue is, the longer one needs to wear their aligners. For optimal results, one should wear their aligners overnight for at least one year or according to their dentist’s instructions. Afterward, they may wear their aligners on alternate nights. Orthodontic patients may need to wear their retainers throughout life to prevent their teeth from moving backward. 

If you are looking for high-quality orthodontic treatment services in our clinic, should be your first choice. We take pride in having the most skilled and experienced orthodontic specialists in town. So, book an appointment with us today and take your first step towards enjoying a healthy and beautiful smile.