The best day in the life of a person who wears braces is the day they come off. No longer do you have to worry about food getting stuck; no longer do you have to bear the aches of tightening wires or wires poking your cheek. You have followed the instructions to the letter that your Vancouver orthodontist has provided and it has finally paid off! It is an awesome feeling to run your tongue over your smooth, straight teeth. Your dedication and commitment to a healthy mouth has now resulted in a beautiful smile.
However, did you know that your oral health plan, most likely, does not stop with the removal of your braces? Now you progress to wearing a retainer. You’ve worn your braces for maybe months or years. Don’t give up your hard-earned smile by neglecting the next step. Take the time to understand why a retainer is important.
Why do I need a retainer?
Braces put pressure on your teeth and bones to gradually move them into alignment. As this process works, your bone structure changes. When your braces come off, it is important to continue holding those bones and teeth in place so they will become accustomed to their new placement. A retainer takes care of this by holding your teeth where they need to be.
When should I wear my retainer?
Our Vancouver orthodontist will create an oral treatment plan during your office visit. Most likely, you’ll need to wear it at all times for the first few months. Only take the retainer out to eat, brush and floss, or if you are playing sports that require contact.
How do I care for my retainer?
For the best care, gently brush the retainer with toothpaste when you are performing your regular oral hygiene routine. Avoid sticky foods while you wear the retainer and stay away from gum. Hard, crunchy foods are not good for the retainer either. Remove the retainer before eating, and put it in your pocket or bag. Our Vancouver orthodontist office gets a lot of calls regarding retainers thrown out from setting them on lunch trays.
A retainer plays an important role in keeping your teeth in their new position. Make sure you don’t negate all the time you’ve spent on getting your teeth to look their best. You won’t have to wear your retainer very long, and the end result is well-worth it.
If you have questions about your retainer or braces, you can always give us a call to discuss or set up an appointment. For more tips and tricks regarding your new smile, follow us on Facebook.