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It Starts With a Smile.

Maintaining Your Smile After Orthodontic Treatment

Many people believe that orthodontic methods such as braces, Clear Correct, and Invisalign are a one and done method to correct their smile. Unfortunately, this is incorrect.

Teeth are like springs, meaning that they can be moved into position via orthodontic methods, but eventually they will try (and succeed) to make their way back to their original position. To prevent this from happening, your dentist or orthodontist will give you a retainer, which you will have to wear if you wish to maintain your smile.

There are two types of retainers, fixed and removable. Both have their pros and cons but usually your dentist will recommend you one based on their assessment of your teeth.

Fixed Retainers

Fixed (or bonded) retainers are metal wires that also come in two forms, straight and zig zag. Both are bonded to the inside of your teeth via composite resin to keep them from travelling. The straight wire is bonded in a straight line across the inside of your teeth, while the zig zag wire is bonded in a zig zag shape to allow you to floss easily. While zig zag wires may seem the like the better option, your dentist will recommend what they believe to be the best fit for your teeth based on gum health, tooth shape, and other factors.

Fixed retainers do carry the chance of falling off during your life time, so it is important to keep them monitored on a six-monthly basis during your check up and cleans. If they do happen to fall off, our dentists will be able to fix the retainer back on or issue you a new one. We do recommend that you visit our practice as soon as the retainer detaches, to prevent your teeth from travelling.

Removeable Retainers

Removeable retainers are often made from metal and/or plastic and can be taken out of your mouth. Your dentist will instruct you on how many hours you must wear your retainer per day. Removeable retainers must be cleaned daily with water and a soft toothbrush, take care not to use toothpaste as it will scratch the plastic and/or metal surface. It is recommended that you bring your removable retainers to your six-monthly check up and clean appointment, so that your dentist may assess its condition regularly.

If you have any further questions about retainers, or any other topics, do not hesitate to make an appointment with our dentists at Drummoyne Dental Practice today.