Removable Retainers

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As with braces, your quality of smile will in the end depend on how well you fared with wearing your removable retainers too. This will be the last few steps to your long-awaited end goal, so don’t let up on the work that you had put in while wearing your braces! With removable retainers the responsibility will be yours to make sure that you wear them as per your orthodontist’s instructions, so don’t forget to wear them – and also take good care of them!

Removable retainers have to be worn for about 8 to 12 hours a day, so you can easily wear them at night. They are durable and long lasting, and can also move teeth slightly, e.g. in the case of closing small gaps between teeth. They are usually used for the top teeth but don’t cover the tops of the teeth. Removable retainers are very convenient when it comes to eating or drinking, or brushing and flossing teeth, as you can take them out for these activities. For the fashion conscious ones among us, your retainers can even be customized with different colors and patterns!

Taking care of your removable retainers is actually easy, but you have to be mindful of their care. Here are some tips to always remember:

  • Remove your retainer before brushing and flossing your teeth, and brush your retainer before placing it back in your mouth. Also: brush all regularly.
  • Put your retainers in their case when they are not in your mouth.
  • Don’t leave retainers or cases where pets or young children can reach them.
  • NEVER wrap your retainer in a napkin – many have been thrown away that way!
  • Don’t put the retainer in your pocket without the case. When you sit, you will bend or break the wires.
  • Take the retainer out when you go and play contact sports or go swimming.
  • Bring your retainer to each of your appointments.
  • Keep retainers out of direct sunlight and away from heat sources like toasters, hot cars, curling irons, coffee pots, blow dryers etc.
  • If you lose or break your retainer, call the office immediately.
  • Keep them away from pets. Dogs love chewing on retainers!