It is extremely important that you wear your retainer after orthodontic treatment. If you don’t wear your it regularly, your teeth will start to shift back into their original position. We have had patients who previously had braces come in to see us to get braces for the second time because they didn’t wear their retainer as prescribed.
The process of braces moves teeth gradually until they are in correct alignment. Because the teeth are attached to your jaw bone, as they move the periodontal ligaments and membranes shift over time as well. This slightly loosens the teeth. After your teeth have reached the desired position, it takes additional time for new bone to grow in the socket area of the teeth which secures them into place.
After your braces come off, or you have completed your course of Invisalign, the teeth and bone still need to solidify which can take some time. The purpose of wearing a retainer is to keep teeth in place until the bone has finished remodeling.
If you aren’t wearing it daily, the relapse of your teeth moving can occur very quickly and you might find that your retainer doesn’t even fit your teeth anymore. If your case was more severe, you may need to wear braces again.
Dr. Grewal will advise you how long you need to wear yours as this can vary from person to person.
- Remember to carry your retainer case with you. Otherwise, it could be damaged if you put it in your purse. You don’t want to put in a napkin while you are eating, as it can easily be thrown away.
- Keep away from pets, especially dogs who might view it as a chew toy.
- Remove when eating or drinking. Hot or warm drinks can warp your retainer. Drinks such as coffee or coke can stain the plastic.
- Do not use toothpaste to clean as it will scratch and dull the retainer.
- Use an effervescent cleaner and soak your retainer to clean.
- If you rinse your retainer, be sure and use cold/tepid water.
- Keep your retainer away from heat sources to avoid warping.
For additional tips on taking care of your retainer, please click here.
When to See Dr. Grewal
If you start to have issues with your retainer not fitting correctly or your retainer getting damaged, please contact us as soon as possible and we can get you in to see Dr. Grewal. Your teeth can start to shift in a matter of days, so we will get you in pronto!
The earlier the problem is addressed, the less drastic the measures will be to correct it.