Orthodontic Retainers

Once the active orthodontic appliances are removed, patients at Moody Orthodontics receive retainers to stabilize the dental correction. The retainers must be worn as instructed because the bone and soft tissues surrounding the teeth are stabilized for several months after removing braces or Invisalign® clear aligners.

The benefits of orthodontic treatment will last a lifetime if you keep essential patient responsibilities in mind.

Facts about retainers

Bone and Soft Tissue Surrounding Teeth Require Stabilization

Once the active orthodontic appliances are removed, retainers are prescribed to stabilize the dental correction based on your treatment plan.

What Happens if I Don't Wear My Retainers?

Failure to wear the retainers may result in undesirable tooth movement, which could necessitate re-treatment. A patient should wear retainers all the time for one year following the removal of braces until wisdom teeth develop or are removed.

Teeth Continue to Move Through Life as Part of the Aging Process

As you age, the muscles surrounding your teeth tighten and place pressure on them, causing them to move or crowd, even after wisdom teeth are removed. Because teeth can continue to move throughout life, we recommend that patients wear retainers a few nights a week indefinitely.

Removable Retainer

Traditional retainer is made of acrylic and stainless steel wires. 

Clear Aligner Retainer

It is made of clear plastic and looks like a clear aligner like Invisalign.

Fixed Bonded retainer

Permanently bonded to the back of your teeth for those patients requiring long-term stability 24/7. Please have this wire monitored by your family dentist at your six-month checkups and brush and floss regularly to clean underneath the wire.

Caring For removable retainers

  • Retainers are made of thermoplastic material that is sensitive to excessive heat. Keep your retainers away from heaters, dishwashers, car dashboards, or any place with temperatures higher than 115 degrees (F).

  • Store them in your retainer case when not in your mouth. This will help prevent loss or breakage.

  • Keep retainers away from any family pets. Retainers are a popular chew toy and can hurt your pet if swallowed.

  • Clean before and after placement in the mouth. Because the material used is slightly porous, plaque tends to cling to the surfaces. Gentle scrubbing with a toothbrush and a mild liquid soap or toothpaste will remove the plaque. A denture cleaning solution, such as Efferdent, will aid in the removal of plaque and tartar if it accumulates. Rinse the retainers thoroughly after cleaning to remove any cleanser residue.

Because retainers are worn for years, they will need periodic replacement. Your original treatment contract includes one set of retainers after appliances are removed. A replacement fee will apply if the retainers are lost or damaged due to neglect.

Contact our office immediately if your retainers need to be recovered or fixed to prevent the movement of teeth. 

We aim to help your smile stay beautiful and healthy for a lifetime. Your cooperation is essential to achieving this goal.