Your orthodontic care does not end when the aligners are removed. Retainers are essential to stabilizing your new tooth arrangement. The braces or aligners force the teeth to return to the mouth, which involves the absorption of bones at the back of the oral cavity. To maintain your new look, you must use the retainers for a period that has been determined by Dr. Bailey, Dr. Smith, or Dr. Johnson. In many cases, patients must use these products for the rest of their lives. Depending on certain factors, the period can even be as short as three months. Retainers are used only intermittently, usually three to five times a week, for those who use them throughout their lives.The care of the retainers is essential to keeping your teeth in their new condition. The care of the retainers can be carried out as follows:
CLEAN YOUR RETAINER REGULARLY
Treat your retainers as your own teeth! Carefully scrub your retainer with a toothbrush and water after each use. Avoid brushing the retainer with toothpaste, as the toothpaste might be abrasive and cause scratches that will make it difficult to clean the keep your retainer clean.
WEAR YOUR RETAINER OFTEN
Use your retainer as often as recommended by your orthodontist. It’s best that you keep your retainer upright, so your smile stays perfect. Remember, retainers only work if you use them!
AVOID HEAT ON YOUR RETAINER
Your retainer will only work if it fits properly! Your doctor will prepare it with the perfect support for your mouth, but it’s up to you to make sure it stays that way. Avoid leaving your retainer in a hot environment, such as a windowsill or a hot car. It will melt or wrap. Never put it in boiling water; you may think that boiling it is a great way to make it as clean as possible, but the heat will ruin it.
KEEP YOUR RETAINER AWAY FROM PETS
Yes, you love your furry best friend, but they have a special ability to snack on retainers. Keep your retainer safe and away from pets at all times.
AVOID PUTTING NAPKINS ON YOUR RETAINER
If you wrap your retainer in a napkin during meals, it may be easy for your waiter or you to throw it in the trash accidentally. To avoid getting into the bin, keep your retainer in its storage box!
SOAK YOUR RETAINER
To add extra cleaning to your retainer, try soaking it. You can buy retainer cleaner, which comes in tablet form, or you can make your own cleaning solution by mixing 1 part of sodium hypochlorite with ten parts of water. Soak for 5-10 minutes, and your retainer will be perfectly clean.
REPLACE YOUR RETAINER WHEN NEEDED
Even a well-made retainer eventually wears out. If you find that your retainer is deteriorating or behaving differently, contact your doctor. Replacing your retainer when due is an important part of maintaining your smile.
CAREFULLY PUT ON AND TAKE OFF YOUR RETAINER
When you put on your stand, make sure it is always on. There should be no gap between the teeth and the support. When removing it, do not twist it with your tongue or pull it to one side. Otherwise, the retainer may get damaged. Loosen your retainer in several places when you remove it and then ease it off. Do not forget to store it in its storage box!
BRUSH YOUR TEETH BEFORE AND AFTER WEARING YOUR RETAINER
Before and after putting on your retainer, brush your teeth. If you put your support on dirty teeth, your support will get dirty much faster, and it is not good for your teeth
KEEP YOUR RETAINER ONE SPOT
It sounds obvious, but do not lose your retainer! Always keep it in the bag when not in use and keep it out of reach of dogs or children. If you lose it, make sure you replace it.
We cannot stress this point, use your support! Your teeth can change throughout your life. Even if you think your teeth are straight and will stay that way, it is essential that you continue to use your retainer! Taking care of your retainer will help to make your teeth look good and make the most of your investment, and do not forget to show off your big smile. For any retainer questions that you might have contact Dr. L’Tanya Joy Bailey, DDS, MS, PLLC in our Old Plank Location or Hickswood Location.