Retainers and Mouth Guards
Retainers & Mouth Guards
If you have lost your retainer, worn through it, or would like a retainer to prevent your teeth from drifting, come see us.
Retainers and Mouth Guards in Greensboro NC
Frequently Asked Questions about Retainers
What are Retainers?
After the orthodontic treatment is completed, fixed or removable retainers are recommended to prevent migration of the teeth back into their old position. The retainers are fabricated immediately after the braces are removed to hinder the possibility of relapse. The last thing you want after months or years of cosmetic dentistry work is to let your teeth revert to their original positions.
What is the Difference Between Fixed and Removable Retainer?
Fixed retainers are preferred for patients who have had their braces because of excessive spacing between their teeth or severe crowding. A fixed retainer is placed on the lingual side of the teeth and is not usually visible.
Removable retainers are worn by patients who are at higher risk of late tooth crowding. Many patients are instructed to wear their removable retainers at night and may opt to continue for the rest of their lives to ensure ideal alignment of their dentition. Because the teeth keep shifting throughout the entire lifespan, this type of retainer may have to be periodically replaced to prevent these oral changes.
What Does a Typical Retainer Look Like?
All retainers are custom-made to meet the unique needs of each patient. Fixed retainers stretch across the back of the teeth and are cemented into place with an appropriate material such as resin bonding. Removable retainers can come in 2 forms = some are fabricated from acrylic with a wire spread across the front of the teeth and sometimes metal clasps to hold the retainer in place. Other removable retainers are fabricated from a strong clear plastic material. These fully cover the teeth and can not only prevent the teeth from moving, but can also help prevent wear from grinding. The clear retainers will need to be replaced periodically if broken, lost or worn out.
How Will the Retainer Affect my Daily Routine?
There will be minimal changes to any daily routine. The fixed retainer will require the use of floss threaders to clean under and around them to ensure the teeth and gums remain healthy.
The removable retainer should not be cleaned with regular toothpaste as it may etch the surface of the acrylic allowing the bacteria to adhere easily. Dissolvable denture cleaners are preferred to keep the retainer clean. If the patient is instructed to wear the removable retainer during the day, it may temporarily affect the speech patterns.
How Early Should Orthodontic Therapy be Considered?
Interceptive orthodontics (treatment of young children) can begin as early as six years of age. During that time, the oral structures are still developing and some issues, such as crowding, can be addressed early. Functional appliances can correct the position of the jaws and dental arches. However, this type of treatment does not apply to all dental conditions.
Why Get Braces as an Adult?
Because of the success of the orthodontic therapy, more adults are currently being treated with shorter-term options like Six Month Smiles and Clear Correct braces than ever before. Physiological changes occur for all people as they age. The smile narrows over the years and may not be as dazzling as it was during the youth. In addition, the crowding late in life is frequently observed, and many patients seek ways to improve their aesthetics of their smiles. Specialized treatments for adults are now available, and all options are presented to the patient during their initial visit to the orthodontist.
How to Maintain a Beautiful Smile After Braces?
The retainers and their effectiveness should be regularly monitored by your local Greensboro family dentist. Routinely scheduled exams and cleaning appointments will ensure that any deviations from the treatment can be detected and addressed before they become more complex.
What are the Possible Indicators for Braces?
Often, patients themselves have a concern about their smile and bring up the conversation with their dentist. The most obvious conditions include spacing, crowding or overlapping of the teeth. In many cases, overbite, underbite or open bite is observed, because it interferes with speech and mastication. Additionally, the upper teeth cover most of the lower teeth resulting in a deep bite that leads to excessive wear and tear.
If you have questions about braces or orthodontics, please make sure to ask us on your next cleaning visit.
What are the Benefits of Wearing Braces?
• Improved aesthetics
• Increased self-esteem
• Enhanced functionality
• Decreased risk of injury to protruding teeth
• Better occlusion and force distribution
• Other dental treatments are optimized