Your child just got his braces removed and he is ecstatic. No more being careful about what to eat, no more worry about food getting stuck in and around the braces and he can finally smile without brackets and wires showing. But wait! Your child just found out that there is one more vital step after getting the braces removed. He has to wear a retainer. Dr. Valeriano recommends that all orthodontic patients wear a retainer after finishing treatment to keep that beautiful smile looking great!
What is a retainer?
The retainer is an orthodontic appliance made to hold the teeth in place so they don’t shift. It takes time for the teeth to settle into the bone and soft tissue to remodel around the new position of the teeth. If the retainer is not used, the teeth will attempt to return to their old position.
What does the retainer do and what are the benefits of wearing the retainer long-term?
After Dr. Valeriano removes your child’s braces, he will provide instructions for retainer wear. Typically, patients must wear the retainer continuously for approximately three months. Following the three months, most children will wear the retainer every night. The bone around the teeth is soft after the braces are removed but will harden over time. As your child ages the risk of shifting is less; however, your child should expect to wear the retainer indefinitely. If your child loses, breaks or outgrows the retainer, Dr. Valeriano will be happy to have another one made.
What type of retainers are there
There are two type of retainers available: fixed and removable. Both types of retainers will maintain the alignment your child has worked hard to achieve. These are options you can discuss with your child’s orthodontist to decide what will work for them. Children who are vested in this part of the process are usually willing participants and want to wear their retainers.
Contact us for a complimentary consultation for your child, and start the journey to a great new smile at Valeriano Orthodontics!