Your Orthodontic Treatment Is Over…Now What?

retention Williston Bristol Colchester

Why Retention?


At Bristol Park Dental, we know the importance of retention. The day the braces come off is an amazing day for any orthodontic patient, but don’t get ahead of yourself, because now that you have the smile you’ve always wanted, you have to keep it. That means wearing your retainers as instructed by Drs. Hamidzadeh and Church. The reason we need retainers in order to keep our teeth in their post-braces position is that it takes time for our teeth, gums, and jaw bones to get used to this new arrangement. So don’t slack off on wearing your retainers!


Removable Retainers


Retainers come in a few different varieties. Removable ones, whether wire and acrylic or clear plastic, have the obvious advantage that you can take them out, which makes it much easier to clean both the retainers and your teeth. However, that also means you might forget to put them back in — or, worse, lose them after taking them out to eat lunch!


Non-Removable Retainers


Non-removable or bonded retainers are strips of wire cemented to the backs of the teeth to hold them in their post-braces position. These retainers have the advantage of permanently ensuring that your teeth don’t shift back to their old positions, but they can make flossing between those teeth tricky. If you think you’re likely to forget to wear your retainers, bonded might be the perfect choice for you.


Maintaining Retainer Hygiene


Just like teeth, retainers are prone to accumulating bacteria, plaque, and tartar. This not only affects their appearance but can also lead to unpleasant odors and tastes. Regular cleaning is essential to keep your retainer fresh and comfortable. The cleaning process depends on the type of retainer you have. For removable retainers, rinse them in cool water and brush daily. For bonded retainers, flossing may be a bit challenging, but it’s crucial to prevent tartar buildup. Floss threaders or a water flosser can be helpful in maintaining the hygiene of bonded retainers.


Periodic Deep Cleaning for Retainer Maintenance


While daily cleanings are vital, occasional deep cleaning is necessary to ensure the longevity of your retainer. For bonded retainers, our hygienists can perform this during regular dental appointments. Removable retainers can be cleaned inexpensively at home. Soak them in a mixture of cool water and baking soda, or try water and vinegar, or hydrogen peroxide. Avoid hot water or harsh chemicals like bleach, as they can damage the retainer. This simple routine helps keep your retainer in top condition.


Proper Storage Between Uses


For those in Williston, Bristol, and Colchester who wear a removable retainer overnight, proper storage during the day is crucial. Enclosed, dark, and damp environments create an ideal breeding ground for harmful bacteria. To avoid this, store your retainer in a dry and open space. This not only applies to retainers but also to toothbrushes. Some retainers may require soaking when not in use, so be sure to check with us for specific care instructions based on the type of retainer you have.


The Significance of Retainers


The necessity of retainers post-braces is rooted in the fact that the supporting structures around our teeth need time to adjust to their new positions. The jaw bone and periodontal ligament continue adapting even after the braces are removed. Neglecting to wear retainers as advised may result in the need for braces again in the near future. Considering the effort you’ve put into achieving a straight smile, maintaining the routine use and care of your retainer is essential for lasting results.


Bristol Park Dental Can Help You Keep Your Perfect Post-Braces Smile


Drs. Hamidzadeh and Church will help you determine which type of retainer will be best to suit your treatment needs and comfort. If you have any questions about retention or the types of retainers available and you live in Williston, Bristol, or Colchester, just give us a call at (802) 453-7700 or send us an email. You can learn more about us by checking our business page, and make sure to get directions before heading our way.

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Bristol Location
(802) 453-7700


(802) 655-4614


(802) 334-6965


(802) 878-1170