Retainers 101: Maintaining Your New Smile

If you have recently undergone orthodontic treatment, that’s a great reason to smile! Teeth straightening in Annapolis gives you a more attractive smile and can decrease your risk of gum disease, tooth decay, and jaw problems from a misaligned bite. Once you are finished wearing braces, you will still need to pay attention to your orthodontic health. Your orthodontist will give you a custom-made retainer to help keep your teeth in their new position. It’s especially important to wear your retainer as directed in the first month after your braces come off, as your teeth are more likely to shift in that time. Keep reading to learn more about retainers and how to maintain your new smile. teeth - retainers

When to Wear Your Retainer

After your braces come off or you finish your Invisalign treatment, your orthodontist will recommend when you should be wearing your retainer. In some cases, it may be 24 hours a day, while in others, you may only have to wear it at night. You may need to wear your retainer for a few years, depending on what your orthodontist says. It is very important to follow your orthodontist’s orders so that your teeth stay in their newly straightened position.

What Your Retainer Feels Like

Chances are, you had to adjust a little bit to get used to wearing braces when you first got them. Similarly, you’ll have a small adjustment period to get used to your new retainer. Your retainer is built just for your mouth, so it should be comfortable very quickly. You may have a fixed or removable retainer; removable retainers should be cleaned regularly so that you don’t court the growth of bacteria. At first, you might experience trouble speaking, but you should adjust to the new feeling in a day or two.

How to Live with a Retainer

Always listen to your orthodontist when it comes to your retainer. Generally speaking, you should remove your retainer when you eat. Keep it in its container so that you don’t accidentally throw it out. If you play contact sports, you should remove your retainer to avoid damage.

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