After wearing braces, diligently taking care of your teeth and going to all your appointments for adjustments, it can be a struggle to accept that you still need to wear a retainer after the braces come off. Sometimes, it helps to understand just why something is necessary in order to find a more positive outlook on the situation.
Why it Matters
Over the years, researchers have found that there is no one position to move teeth into that will guarantee they stay that way forever. As we age, teeth shift no matter how much work we have had done or how straight our teeth were to begin with. That's why retainers are so important. Teeth have the natural tendency to move and shift right after orthodontic treatment especially.
How Do Retainers Work
A retainer is a simple plastic or metal custom-fit appliance that helps keep teeth aligned. Retainers apply calculated pressure to keep teeth in their new position post-orthodontic treatment. The word "retain" means to hold on to something, and we want to hold on to the results you worked hard to achieve through the orthodontic treatment process.
Taking Care of Your Retainer
Taking good care of your retainer is almost as important as making sure to wear it when you're supposed to. After meals, brush it with a soft-bristled brush and store it in its container when not in use to keep it from getting damaged or dirty. You should also soak your retainer when not wearing it to keep it from drying out or getting any cracks.
It takes a lot of time, money and commitment to straighten teeth over the course of an orthodontic treatment process. Protect your teeth and all the sacrifices you have made to make your smile what it is for years to come by wearing your retainer and taking good care of it.
For more information on best oral health practices such as retainer use, or to schedule an appointment with our Dream Team, call us today at 425-315-7666.