When you get your braces, the orthodontist will most likely give you a retainer to wear after you leave their office. That’s because braces aren’t forever. They are only a temporary solution to straighten your teeth. Residual teeth, or adult molars, are the last set of adult teeth in your mouth. After these permanent molars come out, that’s when the other types of adult teeth begin to appear: third molars (your wisdom teeth), second molars (your canines), and first molars (also called pre-molars or cingular molars). Whether you just got braces or have had them for some time, this information is still relevant to you! Keep reading to find out more about how retainers are supposed to fit and how you can keep yours from slipping.
How Are Retainers Supposed to Fit?
Talk to your Orthodontist
While the retainer is an important device, its importance lies more in the fact that you have to wear it than in the actual design of the retainer itself. Therefore, it’s important to find out if you have the right kind of retainer for your situation. Your orthodontist will be able to offer you customized advice about the type and size of retainer that’s best for you based on the severity of your orthodontic treatment, your unique bite, and your specific needs. Your orthodontist can also help you determine the best way to clean your retainer so that you don’t risk introducing harmful bacteria, which could lead to infections around your gums and in your mouth. If you have allergies, it might be a good idea to see if a retainer made of different materials is available. In addition, your orthodontist can also suggest ways to make wearing the retainer more comfortable.
Try a Different Retainer
If you have tried wearing retainers for a couple of months and are still not comfortable with them, you might consider trying a different kind of retainer. There are a few different types of retainers, including the Hawley retainer, the removable retainer, the fixed retainer, and the lingual retainer. Some are more uncomfortable than others, and some are easier to clean than others. If you’ve tried wearing a Hawley retainer and found it too uncomfortable, you might consider trying a removable retainer. You can wear this retainer for much of your waking hours and take it out at night. However, you will still want to follow your orthodontist’s instructions carefully so that you don’t risk any setbacks in your orthodontic treatment.
If you’re not sure if you have the right size retainer, there are a few adjustments you can make to get the best fit possible. First, check to see if your retainer is sitting on your back teeth or on your molars. If it’s sitting on your molars, it’s probably too small. If it’s sitting on your back teeth, it’s probably too big. You can also try adjusting the tension of your retainer. If it’s too tight, it might be causing pain and irritation. If it’s too loose, you might be experiencing some drooling. If you’ve been wearing your retainer consistently but it’s still too loose, you can try using a retainer cord to make it tighter. You can also try using a retainer clip to make it tighter.
Wear It at Night Only
If you’re really struggling to get used to wearing a retainer and feel like you might give up, you might consider wearing your retainer only at night. This way, you don’t have to try to remember to put it in your mouth every few hours. You can just put it in before you go to bed and forget about it until the next morning. However, wearing your retainer at night only is not an ideal solution. It will help you get used to wearing the retainer and make you more comfortable with it. But it will not actually provide you with the same benefits as wearing it all the time. If you’re struggling to get used to wearing a retainer, you might want to consider wearing it for a few hours during the day as well. You can start with just a few hours and gradually increase the amount of time you wear it until you’re wearing it all day long.
Be Patient and Be Committed
If you don’t see immediate results from wearing your retainer on a consistent basis, you might want to give up hope. You might want to throw in the towel after just a few days, feeling frustrated and annoyed because you can’t get used to it. You might want to stop wearing it after a few weeks, feeling like there’s no point in continuing with it. However, orthodontic treatment is a long process, and you need to be patient. You have to commit to wearing your retainer on a consistent basis for a period of several months or even years to make sure that your orthodontic treatment is effective. It’s also important to follow all the instructions provided by your orthodontist.
How to Keep Your Brace and Retainer from Slipping?
If you have braces, you might worry that your retainer will slide out. This can happen. One of the most important things you can do is retainer checks. Retainer checks are the best way to prevent your retainers from coming out. If you’re not sure how to do retainer checks, your orthodontist can show you. Here’s how they work:
- First, use your fingers to open your mouth wide. You’ll want to open your mouth wide enough that you can see your teeth.
- Now, use your thumb and index finger to gently push your teeth out of the way so you have clear access to your retainers.
- Next, pull your tongue out of your mouth so that you have more room to see inside your mouth.
- You’re almost ready. The last step is to make sure that your retainer isn’t hiding behind your tongue.
What If Your Retainer Isn’t Fitting Right?
- If your retainer doesn’t fit right, or if you’re experiencing pain or discomfort, don’t leave it as is. Instead, call your orthodontist and ask for a new retainer.
- Retainers are soft and bendable, so there’s a good chance you can break yours in. Start by putting it in warm water for a few minutes, while gently moving it back and forth to break the retainer in.
- After you break it in, let the retainer air dry. If you put it in the microwave to speed up the process, you could damage the retainer.
The Importance of Retention
- If you have braces now, your orthodontist will probably recommend that you wear a retainer for the rest of your life.
- That’s because there’s a good chance that your teeth will shift back to their original position once your braces come off.
- Retainers keep your teeth in the space they were initially meant to be. Retainers can also help prevent gum recession after braces are removed.
- After braces come off, your teeth will loosen in their sockets.
- Retainers can help keep teeth in their sockets, which is important to prevent gum recession.
If you have braces, you may be asked to wear a retainer after they come off. Retainers are important because they keep your teeth in place after your braces are removed. Retainers are soft and flexible, so you can break them in to make them more comfortable. It’s important to keep your retainer clean and have it the right size. If you have braces, make sure to keep your retainer clean and keep up with retainer checks to prevent your retainer from slipping out!