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The day that you have your braces removed will no doubt be a happy day, as you will be able to show your beautiful new smile to everyone. However, there is another step after braces, which is the retention period, and we offer some insight into wearing an orthodontic retainer.

Braces are typically worn for several months or even years to realign the teeth, and after this period, you will need to help your smile maintain its new position by holding the teeth in place. Retainers don’t have a set time period like braces since some patients wear them for several months while others wear retainers for life. Our orthodontist will determine how long your retainer needs to be worn.

We offer two different types of retainers, which are fixed and removable. A fixed retainer becomes a permanent part of your smile and is cemented behind your teeth, where it can receive the same brushing and flossing as natural teeth would, though tools such as a water flosser or floss threader may be more efficient than floss string at cleaning around the appliance. A removable retainer can be placed in a solution of water and vinegar to be cleaned with gentle scrubbing. You should avoid using regular toothpaste to prevent damage to the material.

We encourage you to carry around the retainer case that you will receive for your appliance so that you can place the retainer inside when it’s not being worn. By always having the case on hand, you can safely place your retainer in a purse, backpack or your pocket and avoid an expensive replacement.

If you would like to learn more about the purpose of an orthodontic retainer in Johnson City, Tennessee, please feel free to contact Bradshaw & Hathaway at 423-929-1126 today to schedule an appointment with our orthodontists, Dr. Daniel Bradshaw and Dr. John Hathaway.