A Retainer Will Be Needed After Your Braces Have Been Removed

Your teeth are anchored into their sockets by a series of periodontal ligaments. Through the course of each adjustment session, your orthodontist at Rollins and Petersen Orthodontics will adjust your braces and teeth one step closer to their ideal positions. Even after the braces have been removed, there will still be some residual tension in the periodontal ligaments.

If it isn’t addressed by some means, the tension can slowly start to pull your teeth out of their ideal alignment. To prevent this, your orthodontist will fit you for a retainer immediately after your braces have been removed.

There are three different styles of retainers that your orthodontist typically recommends:

  1. A Hawley-style retainer is the most common. This is basically a thin piece of acrylic that is molded to the shape of the roof of your mouth. It is removable yet wires securely lock it into place.
  2. The orthodontist might recommend a clear, plastic retainer if your teeth only need minor adjustments. The clear, plastic material makes it hard for people to notice it is even in place.
  3. A fixed retainer might be required if your front teeth need a significant amount of adjustment. This is a firm, metal wire that is cemented behind your teeth.

You should expect your mouth to produce excess saliva for the first few days after you start wearing a retainer. After a while, your mouth will adapt to the retainer and things should return to normal.

If you are due to have your braces removed and you have questions about what type of retainer you’ll need, contact Rollins and Petersen Orthodontics to seek further insights.