You have waited a long time to get your braces removed, but your orthodontic treatment isn’t finished yet!
Right after your braces come off, orthodontic patients will receive their retainers. Sometimes after patients have their braces off we may get a few calls asking why their retainer no longer fits.
One reason why this may occur is because something may have happened to distort the shape of the retainer.
Clear/plastic retainers can be affected by hot liquids as the heat can warp them. If they distort just a tiny bit, it can affect how your retainer fits in your mouth. Traditional wire and acrylic retainers can become distorted by putting the retainer in your mouth incorrectly or stepping or sitting on it.
Unfortunately, the main reason we see a retainer not fitting is because the retainer is not being warn according to the details given to patients when they receive them.
Keep in mind, that a retainer helps keep your teeth in place after the use of braces. In order for your teeth to straighten, they will loosen in the process along with the ligaments that hold them in place. It is natural for the ligaments to want to pull your teeth back to their original position. By using a retainer, it allows your teeth to tighten back up with the ligaments in the new position.
Patients may notice that if they don’t wear their retainer, their teeth can drift back to where they were before. Your orthodontist will recommend the amount of time needed to wear the retainer as everyone’s teeth respond differently to treatment.
If you happen to lose your retainer, it is very important that you contact your orthodontist’s office as soon as possible to be fit for a new retainer. The longer you wait, the better chance of your teeth drifting back into their old positions.