The routine adjustment sessions with Memphis Orthodontic Specialists, P.C. have allowed your braces to slowly realign your teeth toward their new, ideal alignment. However, once your braces have been removed, there will still be some residual tension in the periodontal ligaments that anchor them in your mouth.
Without addressing the residual tension, your teeth will slowly start to migrate out of alignment in a process known as relapse. Wearing a custom retainer, you can hold your teeth in their new alignment while the residual tension in the periodontal ligaments slowly subsides. You should expect to wear your retainer for about as long as you were wearing braces.
There are three different types of retainers, two of them are removable.
Hawley retainers are the most common type of retainer Memphis Orthodontic Specialists, P.C. recommends. This is a thin acrylic piece molded to the shape of the roof of your mouth. It is removable yet securely attaches to your teeth with wires. A clear plastic retainer is called for if your teeth only needed minor adjustment. The clear plastic material makes it hard for people to notice they are even in.
A fixed retainer is sometimes called for it you needed a significant amount of adjustment, particularly in your lower, front teeth. A fixed retainer is usually a firm metal wire cemented behind your teeth.
It’s normal for your mouth to produce some excess saliva for the first few days after you start wearing a retainer. After a while your mouth will adapt and saliva production should return to normal.
If you are due to have your braces removed and you have questions about retainers, you can call Memphis Orthodontic Specialists, P.C. at 901-767-5415 to schedule an appointment.