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November 12, 2023

How Important Is My Retainer In Maintaining My Smile?

Woman smiling and wearing a retainer

After years of hard work with your dentist at one of our Winnipeg dental clinics, your teeth are finally straight, improving both your appearance and your oral health. However, keeping your new smile doesn't end after you’re done with aligners. In many situations, the next critical step in orthodontic therapy is the use of retainers. Here we'll talk about why retainers are so important and what they do to maintain healthy, straight teeth!

Maintain Your New Smile For Life

When you’ve completed your orthodontic treatment, your teeth will be naturally straight. Age and genetics, among other things, will affect how your teeth have grown and shifted. But whether you had braces or used clear aligners, it’s unlikely your orthodontist made your teeth perfectly straight. A natural, “straight” smile is actually a bit crooked. But how do you keep it straight? By using your retainer.

A retainer's primary function is to keep teeth from shifting back to their original place once orthodontic treatment has been completed. Think of your retainer as a trustworthy barrier, keeping your teeth in their new locations for years to come.

To fully appreciate their value, just think about how far your teeth have come in terms of function and appearance since you started treatment. So, when you don’t use your retainer, you risk having to start the orthodontic treatment all over again.

Ensuring Bite Stability

Retainers serve a purpose beyond maintaining the alignment of your front teeth; they play a pivotal role in ensuring the stability of your bite. This part is important if you've undergone orthodontic treatment to correct bite irregularities such as overbites, underbites or crossbites.

Retainers preserve the enhanced functionality of your bite, which is a critical aspect of overall oral health. As your upper and lower teeth are carefully aligned during treatment, the goal is to create a bite that not only looks great but also functions seamlessly. By consistently wearing your retainers, you ensure the longevity of both the aesthetic and functional aspects of your orthodontic journey, ensuring your overall oral health remains optimal.

Adapting To Your New Smile

Your teeth and the surrounding tissues need some time to adapt to their newly created positions. Retainers provide that necessary support during this transition period. While the bone and tissues around your teeth settle into their new places, retainers help ensure that your smile remains stable and comfortable.

Retainers come in various forms, including removable and fixed retainer options. Many individuals that have undergone treatment prefer the removable retainers for nighttime wear, while others choose to wear them part-time during the day. Your orthodontist may recommend a lingual bar (a fixed retainer on the tongue side of your teeth) to ensure your teeth remain in their new position. Discuss your wear schedule with your orthodontist to find what works best for you.

Should you have any inquiries regarding your retainers or any other orthodontic treatments, don't hesitate to book an appointment with Dental Image Therapy Centres. Our seasoned dental experts are well-equipped to help you achieve your confident smile. You'll find our conveniently located clinics at St. Vital Centre and Garden City Shopping Centre.

Book Your Next Dental Appointment Today

Maybe it's time for your and your family's regular checkup and cleaning, you have a toothache or you need to get your treatment plan going - whatever the reason, we're here to help you get your confident smile. Whether you're a new patient or a returning friend, we can't wait to see you at your next appointment at either of our Winnipeg clinics!

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