Child holding retainer and smilingNow that you’ve gotten your braces off you probably think you are in the clear, right? We all wish this were the case! Unfortunately, our mouth and teeth continue to change throughout our lives, which means, a retainer is necessary! Skeptical? Follow along as we explain the purpose of a retainer, why you should wear one, and for how long!

How do Retainers Work?

Retainers help to hold, or retain, the position of your smile post braces. Without this handy device your smile is susceptible to a mesial drift, or the shift of your teeth overtime. By wearing a retainer after Invisalign or braces, you are halting that drift dead in its tracks!

In order to truly stop your teeth from movement, a retainer is recommended for the rest of your life.

The Pros of Wearing a Retainer

Believe it or not, wearing a retainer helps train your teeth! Our smiles work against us by attempting to gravitate back towards their original form. By wearing a retainer, not only are you maintaining their position, your teeth are bound to have a harder time resorting back to their original alignment.

How Long Do I Wear My Retainer?

Retainer usage depends on the patient, although a general rule of thumb applies:

3-6 months after braces: After braces or Invisalign, your teeth are vulnerable to change. We recommend that you wear your retainer all day and night in order to keep your teeth straight. Aside from eating and brushing your teeth, your retainer should be worn at all times!

2 years after braces: After 2 years, you can start the process of easing back to just wearing your retainer at night.

3 years after braces and onwards: You’ve made it! Now you don’t have to worry about being so diligent. Wearing your retainer a few nights a week will keep your smile in shape!

Maintain Your Child’s Smile

At Denver Pediatric Dentistry, we are committed to offering long-term treatment options that will keep your child’s teeth healthy. Learn more about our orthodontic services and contact us to schedule your appointment today.