Once the active period is completed, your braces are removed. The next step is called retention. Retainers are utilized to hold your teeth in their new positions until your bone, gums, and muscles adapt to the new teeth positions. We often place a fixed bonded retainer on the back of your lower front teeth, this is what we call a C-C retainer. This is boned to two teeth on the lower and hold your front six teeth in place. We like to leave this in place indefinitely. You must wear your upper removable retainer as instructed, otherwise your teeth may move toward their original positions and the benefit of wearing your braces will be lost. We generally recommend full-time wear of your upper retainer for one year after the braces are removed, and nightly wear thereafter.
Since removable appliances can easily be taken out by the patient, there may be a tendency not to wear them as we have prescribed. This means your teeth, jaws and muscles may move back toward their original positions.
Drs.Rapp and Brandt will determine how long you need to wear your retainer. Time varies with each patient. Some people may need retainers for an extended period of time in order to eliminate shifting of the teeth. In some cases, permanent retention may be necessary. The retention period is an important part of your overall treatment and should not be neglected!.
Remember, wear them in your mouth, not in your pocket. Retainers work when you follow our instructions.
Clean your retainers! After meals, clean all parts of the retainer with a toothbrush and toothpaste.
Handle your retainers with care. Retainers are easy to lose. If you take your retainers out, always place them in your retainer case for safety. More information on caring for your retainers.