A retainer is a custom-made appliance, which is fitted when your treatment is finished to prevent your teeth moving out of their new, straight position. They can either be fixed or ‘bonded’ to your teeth or removable clear aligners.
The wearing of retainers, or ‘retention’ is one of the most important things to know about when deciding to have orthodontic treatment.
What are the different types of retainer?
We know that teeth want to move throughout your life and there is always the potential that after treatment your teeth may subtlety change position, if not held in position by a retainer.
Bonded retainers are fitted to minimise relapse. They are stainless steel wires cemented to the inside of your front teeth and they stay on permanently.
They cannot be seen as they sit behind your teeth. It is very important to clean them thoroughly to avoid decay.
They are clear plastic retainers that can be taken in and out of the mouth. You will be required to wear them at night to supplement the bonded retainers to minimize relapse.
You may clean the retainer with your toothbrush and toothpaste. However, do not use toothpaste on a clear ESSIX retainer as it will stain. Your retainer it can be soaked in a solution such as Retainerbrite, following manufacturers’ instructions, to disinfect it and prevent build-up.