The Scoop on Retainers
Many people don't realize that retention, or retainer wear after braces, is a lifelong endeavor. Your teeth will always want to move…even when you’re 80!
To prevent shifting from happening after the braces are removed, we recommend 16-hour per day wear of your clear Invisitain retainer. For the first year following the removal of the braces, or until the third molars (wisdom teeth) have grown in or have been removed. Consistent retainer wear after your braces are removed is a very important part of the orthodontic process.
Retainer care is also very important to minimize replacing retainers regulary. Cleaning your retainers is just as important as wearing them! At some point you may need to replace the Invisitain retainer if it becomes too loose; but if taken care of, they will last for years.
The lower standard retainer that we use is a permanently bonded stainless steel wire that is placed behind the lower front six teeth. No one will be able to see this retainer, but it serves to maintain the space and shape of the lower arch which is often where shifting will begin. We do recommend that this retainer is left in place indefinitely. If brushed and flossed regularly, it is very easy to maintain and will not cause damage to the teeth.
Your orthodontic treatment begins with braces, but is a lifelong investment. Taking care of your retainers following your braces is important to keep your teeth straight for the rest of your life!