Not many people realise that it takes a little while for the teeth to settle into their new spots. The braces will slowly manoeuvre them into their new positions, but teeth are surprisingly rebellious and usually begin to roam about again. Many patients who get braces – both adults and children – are chomping at the bit to get the small wires taken out of their mouth, and in their eagerness they overlook the last crucial step; the retainer.
What Is A Retainer?
A retainer is a small device which has been specially sculpted to fit your bite. Usually made from plastic or metal, it sits in your mouth and acts as a supporting frame for your smile. They’re common to be used after braces or dental alignments, to keep the teeth in place until the mouth has healed correctly and the teeth are settled.
What Happens If I Stop Wearing Mine?
Okay, so your braces are off. We get it, you’re excited to go grinning and dining with your new pearly whites – but the dental care isn’t over just yet. There are some consequences that may arise from neglecting your retainer, and the results could range from a ‘little annoying’ to ‘very expensive’.
Your Teeth Have Been Moved To Their Natural Positions:
If your treatment involved moving your teeth to positions that they should have naturally occupied, the mouth requires slightly less adjustment and your orthodontist may recommend a considerably shorter period of time to wear your retainer. Even though this is an easier process for your mouth, you should still wear your retainer for as long as your orthodontist recommends. This will help the teeth to settle in to gums and adjust to their new space, and will keep them from straying. If your teeth begin to move around the jaw again, you may need orthodontic services, such as braces, all over again.
Your Teeth Have Been Moved To New Positions:
If your orthodontist has moved your teeth to new positions in the jaw, then your teeth are highly likely to try and recover their lost ground once the braces are off. In this circumstance, the teeth could move back to their original positions and cause you discomfort – as well as another extensive period of braces, to align the teeth once more.
Your orthodontist will examine your teeth and situation, then will prescribe a length of time which they see fit. After the costs and effort involved in braces, you want to be sure that the results will last! This is why your orthodontist encourages you to wear your retainer, and to be consistent during the time where your teeth are likely to shift once more. If you have any further queries about your orthodontic care, call us at Carillon City Dental. Our team of dental and orthodontic experts can arrange an appointment or consultation with you to discuss any issues you may have.