What Can A Retainer Do For You

You might want perfectly-aligned teeth so you can flash your “pearly whites” in public without worry. Retainers can help provide that award-winning smile. But, it can do more than to help straighten teeth.


What are Retainers?


Retainers are orthodontic tools to help maintain proper teeth alignment. You might see other people wearing retainers after sporting braces. After the individual achieves the desired teeth alignment, the orthodontist may opt to replace the braces with retainers.

Wearing retainers may take months or years before the teeth achieve the desired alignment permanently. It’s because the gums and jawbone may need a long period before it adjusts to the new position. Using retainers will help prevent the teeth from being misaligned until the gums and jawbone adjusts to the new position.

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What are the Different Types of Retainers?


Retainers come in different types, and your orthodontist might issue you with a specific kind to help your teeth, gums, and jawbone adjust properly. Albeit there are now different retainer categories available, you may classify them into two major groups:

  • Permanent

Like its name suggests, permanent retainers bond with the teeth, and only orthodontists may remove it correctly and safely. Also called fixed retainers, these orthodontic tools might help people correct speech impediments aside from assisting the teeth in aligning to the desired position.

  • Removable

Removable retainers might be more common than their permanent counterparts. Many individuals opt to use removable options because of their simplicity. These orthodontic tools may also be easier to clean as you can remove the device and wash it by hand.

Wearing your retainer requires you to take proper care of the tool to lessen the risks of potential adverse effects. Remember to brush and floss regularly, and remove any debris that might get stuck in the retainers to keep its cleanliness and integrity.


The Benefits of Wearing Retainers


People with speech impediments or crooked teeth might need retainers after wearing braces for a period. Wearing these orthodontic tools help promote several benefits to their users, and these advantages may include:


Keep that Beautiful Smile

It might be safe to say that all smiles are beautiful. However, you might want to undergo cosmetic dentistry to make that smile shine brighter than before.

Smiles that flaunt straight teeth may help increase confidence and self-esteem. Other people might see you be more attractive, confident, and successful if you a smile with straight teeth. The weeks, months, or years of wearing braces will help you achieve that goal.

However, your gums, jawbone, and teeth might revert to its original positions if left unchecked. Retainers will help maintain the structure of these areas. Use these orthodontic tools correctly, and you might be beaming those straight, white teeth for the rest of your life.

Take note that the first month is the most critical period after shifting from wearing braces to retainers. It’s this period when the teeth might be more prone to move back to its crooked state. Wear your retainers as advised by your orthodontist to avoid this orthodontic tragedy from happening. Otherwise, you might be looking at going back to wearing braces for another period.


Helps Improve Speech Impediments

The misalignment of the teeth may cause speech issues. For example, gaps between the teeth might make it challenging for specific individuals to pronounce the letter “S.”

Wearing braces will help close the gaps to help rectify speech impediments. Also, specific retainer types might help adjust tongue placement. Irregular tongue placement might be challenging for particular individuals to pronounce certain letters like “R,” “L,” or “W.”

Tongue adjustment with the help of retainers may help adjust tongue placement. So, you can pronounce these letters the way you should say them.


Assistance for Additional Teeth Treatments

Some orthodontic patients might need additional dental care for problems like bruxism or temporomandibular joints (TMJ).

Bruxism is an issue wherein an individual might clench and grind their teeth while sleeping at night. An orthodontist might issue special retainers to help remedy bruxism. These orthodontic tools help supply the teeth with a buffer to prevent grinding.

TMJ, on the other hand, is a condition wherein the mouth doesn’t open-and-close properly. Patients with this issue may suffer from jaw pain, which may lead to difficulty in chewing, speaking, and swallowing.

These orthodontic concerns may need specific procedures to form permanent cures. But, the orthodontist might supply patients with unique retainers to help with these treatments.


Promotes Excellent Oral Hygiene

It can be challenging to brush and floss when you have crooked teeth. It might be difficult to reach certain areas if a portion of one tooth blocks another. Also, chewing with teeth misalignments might be prone to food getting stuck between gaps.

First, talk to your orthodontist to help equip your teeth with braces. Then, once the braces are off, start wearing your retainers. You may now clean your straight (and more beautiful) teeth better than before. Also, your straight teeth may now let you chew with minimal risk of getting food stuck in between your chompers.


Are There Risks to Using Retainers?


Perhaps the main objective of wearing retainers is to help the teeth avoid shifting back to its crooked state. So, it may not cause any long-term complications. But, if the user complains about sharp or nagging pains, then the patient should return to the orthodontist.

The dental professional may adjust, fix, or replace the retainers. Also, patients need to rectify this orthodontic issue as soon as possible. Otherwise, the use of retainers that cause pain might lead to additional dental problems like infections.

Also, common hygiene problems like plaque buildup might be more prominent when using braces or retainers. So, it would help if you didn’t forget about proper oral hygiene when using these orthodontic tools.




Wearing retainers can be a fantastic, life-changing achievement. The different retainer types promote several benefits to its users. Be patient and have perseverance while wearing your braces, and you’ll soon shift from using those orthodontic tools to retainers. Care for your retainers properly, and you may smile with perfectly-aligned teeth for life.




HealthStatus has been operating since 1998 providing the best interactive health tools on the Internet, millions of visitors have used our health risk assessment, body fat and calories burned calculators.The HealthStatus editorial team has continued that commitment to excellence by providing our visitors with easy to understand high quality health content for many years.
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HealthStatus has been operating since 1998 providing the best interactive health tools on the Internet, millions of visitors have used our health risk assessment, body fat and calories burned calculators. The HealthStatus editorial team has continued that commitment to excellence by providing our visitors with easy to understand high quality health content for many years.

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