Your retainer is a removable orthodontic appliance carefully designed to maintain your teeth in their correct positions. Be sure to wear your retainers according to the instructions provided.
First 6 months: Wear your retainers at all times except for meals and brushing.
Next 6 months: Wear your retainers during sleeping hours every night.
Next 6 months: Wear your retainers 3 nights per week.
Indefinitely: Wear your retainers 1-2 nights per week.
Adult patients may never be able to cut down wear of their retainers below night wear, 7 nights per week. Adults frequently experience a greater tendency for the teeth to shift following removal of braces.
You should not cut down on the wearing time of your retainer below that which will maintain proper position of your teeth, regardless of any other instructions. When you wear your retainer at night and your teeth are tender, more wear is needed.
- Your retainers are to be taken out to eat. They may be left in to drink cool water only, take out for all other liquids. Also, do not chew gum with retainers in your mouth.
- Remove and insert your retainers carefully to avoid breaking the plastic or deforming the wires.
- Brush your retainers with toothpaste when you brush your teeth. Cleansers intended for dentures will aid in keeping retainers clean.
- DO NOT expose your plastic retainers to heat – they will warp. Use cold water to clean your retainers.
- Your retainers will lose their “plastic” taste within a few days. Soaking your retainer in mouthwash may help.
- The retainer will affect your speech initially. Leave the retainer in and your tongue will adapt to the retainer in a few days. It helps to read aloud from a book to learn to speak clearly with your new retainers.
NEVER: wrap your retainer in a napkin when eating. It will be forgotten when you leave the table and will be thrown away.
NEVER: place your retainer in your pocket when it’s not in the case – it will get broken.
NEVER: leave your retainer out of its case where a pet or small child can find it. Pets
love to chew on the plastic which, to them, smells like you.
ALWAYS: store your retainer in its proper case when it’s not in your mouth.
ALWAYS: bring your retainer to your adjustment appointment.
CALL IMMEDIATELY – IF RETAINERS ARE LOST, BROKEN OR DO NOT FIT – DO NOT WAITUNTIL YOUR NEXT SCHEDULED APPOINTMENT OR IT MAY BE TOO LATE TO FIX TEETH WITH RETAINERS. BRACES MAY BE NECESSARY IF TEETH HAVE MOVED TOO MUCH. (Please Note: There will be a charge for any new retainers. There will be a charge for retreatment with braces for excessive tooth movement.)