Orthodontic Retainers

The benefits of orthodontic treatment will last a lifetime if you wear your retainers as prescribed. Keep these important patient responsibilities in mind:

Retainer Wear

Once active orthodontic appliances are removed, you will receive retainers to maintain your treatment results. Because the bone and soft tissues surrounding the teeth take time to stabilize, it is important that the retainers are worn as instructed. Failure to wear the retainers may result in undesirable tooth movement, which could necessitate re-treatment.

Typically, retainers are worn full time for the first 6-12 months after treatment is complete. Because teeth can continue to move throughout life, it is recommended that patients who have undergone orthodontic treatment wear retainers at night as long as they want to keep their teeth straight. 

Retainer Care

  • Retainers are made of a thermoplastic material that is sensitive to excessive heat, so they should be kept away from heaters, dishwashers, car dashboards or any place where the temperatures exceed 115 degrees (Fº).  Never place them in boiling water for cleaning.
  • Retainers should be kept in the proper retainer case when they are not in your mouth.
  • Keep away from any family pets as they like to chew on them.
  • Clean before and after placement in the mouth. Gentle scrubbing with a soft toothbrush and a mild liquid soap will remove plaque. A denture cleaning solution, such as Efferdent, can also be used. Be sure to rinse the retainers thoroughly after cleaning.

Because retainers are worn for years, they will need to be  replaced periodically.  If the retainers are lost or damaged due to neglect, there will be a charge for replacement. If the retainers become loose or break, contact our office immediately.

Removable Retainers

Hawley Retainers

More traditional retainer made of acrylic and stainless steel wires. 







Essix Retainers

Made of clear plastic similar to an Invisalign clear aligner.