Retainer instructions

It has been our pleasure serving your dental care needs. We are super excited that your time has come to have the braces removed. Please provide us with your email to send you your before and after photos.

After braces are removed you will be given retainers. You must maintain a careful home oral hygiene program and follow the instructions for wearing the retainer you received.

  • Wear your retainers full time (24/7), until the doctor instructs you otherwise. Current American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) guidelines recommend retainer wear for life to minimize relapse.
  • Take your retainers out when eating… If you chew with your retainers they will break. ALWAYS put retainers in their case! Pets love to chew on them!
  • Keep retainers away from extreme heat (hot water or cold), car dashboards, pockets, the washing machine, and napkins.
  • Clean retainers thoroughly once a day with a toothbrush and soap. Brushing retainers removes the plaque and eliminates odors.
  • Initially, you may find it difficult to speak. Practice speaking, reading, or singing aloud to get used to them faster.
  • Retainers are breakable, so treat them with care. If you have any questions or concerns about your retainers, or your retainers need adjusting, call us. Do not try to adjust them yourself.
  • Always bring your retainers (even if they don’t fit anymore or are broken) to your future appointments.
  • Retainer replacement is expensive. With proper care they will last longer and you will need fewer replacements.
  • Retainers can only hold teeth in their current positions. They will not correct teeth that have already shifted. If shifting has occurred new retainers cannot bring teeth back to their original positions.
  • You will need an orthodontic consult to evaluate the options available for retreatment which may require additional orthodontic treatment at an additional cost.
  • If you are getting a replacement retainer please note that your new retainer is made to fit your existing teeth. If your bite has changed then the retainer will not be the same as the original retainer.

Once you are done with your orthodontic treatment we encourage our patients to return for a yearly retainer checkup. At this appointment you must bring your retainer so we can see how they are fitting.

Please continue to see your dentist every 6 months for your checkup and cleanings. If you have not had a complete dental examination and cleaning within the last six months, contact your family dentist and schedule an appointment.

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