After your braces are off and you’ve finished orthodontic treatment, you’re not quite done yet. Your teeth need to settle into their new positions, as the supporting structures in your mouth have to strengthen and solidify around your new smile. Retainers are necessary to “retain” all the work that your braces have done. So you should be sure to wear your retainer according to Dr. Andrews’ instructions. If not, your teeth will start drifting back to their original positions!
Here are some general tips about using your retainers:
- Remove them when needed – You shouldn’t wear retainers when eating or swimming.
- Store them properly – Proper storage means your retainers need to go directly in a case when you’re not wearing them. They are fragile. If one falls to the floor, it can be destroyed instantly by a careless foot, and pets like to chew on them too. Do not store them in a napkin! They get thrown away accidentally all the time.
- Clean your retainers – Brush them with a soft toothbrush and toothpaste. You can also you can use mouthwash, a denture cleaner, white vinegar, or even Dawn dish detergent.
As long as you want your teeth to stay straight, we recommend making sure your retainer stays fitting. When you get to the end of your treatment we know you’ll agree that you don’t want them to move! We’ll give you our best recommendations tailored to your mouth when we finish treatment to make sure you always feel empowered by your smile!