Your journey to achieve a perfectly aligned smile often involves the use of orthodontic treatments such as metal braces or Invisalign. While the completion of the active treatment phase marks a significant milestone, it is crucial to understand that the journey doesn’t end there. Wearing retainers after the main component of your orthodontic treatment is over is key to ensuring you keep the great results you’ve worked so hard for. Here’s some insight from an orthodontist in Bundoora.
Why Do I Need a Retainer?
Orthodontic treatments like metal braces and Invisalign work by applying pressure to gradually shift teeth into their desired positions. However, once the braces are removed, the teeth can revert to their original misaligned state – and teeth have very long memories! This is where retainers step in, playing a pivotal role in maintaining the corrections achieved during the active treatment phase.
Retainers are custom-made devices designed to hold teeth in their newly aligned positions. The soft tissues, ligaments, and bones surrounding the teeth need time to adapt to their new arrangement. Without the support of retainers, there is a risk that your teeth will move out of their correct alignment.
Types of Retainers
There are different types of retainers, and the choice often depends on what your orthodontist in Bundoora recommends as well as your personal preferences. The two main categories of retainers are removable retainers and fixed retainers.
- Removable Retainers: These are commonly made of clear plastic or acrylic material. Patients can take them out for eating, brushing, and flossing, providing convenience in maintaining oral hygiene. However, the success of removable retainers relies on consistent usage, as neglecting to wear them can lead to relapse.
- Fixed Retainers: Also known as permanent or bonded retainers, these are attached to the back surfaces of the teeth using dental cement. Fixed retainers are discreet and eliminate the risk of forgetting to wear them. However, they require extra attention to oral hygiene to prevent plaque build-up around the bonded area.
Getting Used to Your Retainers
While wearing retainers may feel like yet another commitment after you finish wearing metal braces or Invisalign, it is essential to recognise that this phase is temporary. Most orthodontists recommend full-time retainer use initially, gradually transitioning to night-time wear as the teeth stabilise. Adapting to this routine is a small price to pay for maintaining the beautiful smile achieved through months or years of orthodontic treatment.
It’s All About Getting You Long-Term Benefits
Investing in retainers offers long-term benefits that extend beyond preventing relapse. Retainers contribute to the overall oral health and function of your teeth. They aid in maintaining proper occlusion – that is, that the upper and lower teeth fit together correctly. This alignment not only enhances the appearance of the smile but also promotes effective chewing, reducing the risk of jaw pain and related issues.
Adult and Children’s Braces from Your Orthodontist in Bundoora
At iSmile Orthodontics, we want you to enjoy a lifetime of healthy, perfect teeth! So, if you’re looking for an orthodontist in Bundoora that can deliver every aspect of your orthodontic treatment, from affordable orthodontics like metal braces or Invisalign to retainers, it’s time to contact us and get a FREE consultation!