There’s newfound freedom when you get your braces off. You don’t have to worry about those pesky brackets, wires, and rubber bands. Not to mention, the countless orthodontist appointments for cleaning and tightening.
So when your braces come off, you’re probably not expecting that in order to keep your teeth straight, you will be asked to wear a retainer. How fast do teeth move after braces? It can vary, but some movement can happen in a few days or weeks. Trust us when we say your teeth will be thanking you for keeping your end of the deal and wearing a retainer.
After your braces come off, depending on where they were in the first place, your dentist will determine if a fixed or removable retainer is best for your teeth. A fixed retainer does what the name implies. It is a retainer that fixes itself to the inner part of your teeth where the tongue lies.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, if your dentist recommends a removable retainer, this will allow you to take the retainer out of your mouth and put it back in as needed. Removable retainers are generally for teenagers or adults who will have an easier time remembering to put them back in at night.
Wearing a retainer may seem like an annoyance, but you are putting all of the money, energy and time you spent on getting your teeth straightened to good use. However, to answer the big question, yes, you do and should wear your retainer if you want to keep your teeth straight. With your teeth moving after braces, wearing a retainer will ensure they don’t realign themselves back to where they were originally.
For those with a removable retainer: Your doctor will suggest that you wear your retainer all day and night for a couple of months. This practice will ensure your teeth won’t space out and will stay where they need to be. After that, every night when you go to bed, you should wear your retainer.
For those with a permanent retainer: If you had your permanent retainer placed when you were a child or teenager, it should be there for at least 10 years before removal. If you’re an adult, your permanent retainer will be in there, well, permanently.
The work has only begun when it comes to caring for your teeth after braces. Just like your teeth, your retainer requires a little TLC. Cleaning your retainer, whether fixed or removable, will remove any bacteria that may be present and ensure that it stays in good condition.
With a permanent retainer, all you need to worry about is flossing between the wire and tooth. This practice will remove any food that may be trapped and keep gums healthy. If you have a removable retainer, wash it after eating or drinking. When you brush your teeth at night, give your retainer good brushing too.
Life after braces is exciting; you have this incredible new smile that is ready to be shown to the world. Wearing a retainer will soon become a habit, and you’ll be grateful you don’t ever have to go back to what your teeth once were. If you’re ready to have the smile you’ve always dreamt of, check out NewSmile™ Invisible aligners.