Teeth Straightening Retainers

Teeth Straightening Retainers: What You Need To Know

Teeth retainers are custom-made dental devices designed to fit over the upper or lower teeth. They play a crucial role in preserving the correct alignment of teeth, particularly after orthodontic treatments like braces.

Following teeth straightening, it’s essential to maintain their new positions. Dentists or orthodontists often recommend wearing Teeth Straightening Retainers for this purpose.

Retainers are instrumental in ensuring the long-term health and alignment of teeth. They help uphold the results achieved through orthodontic treatment and facilitate the healing of the bone supporting the teeth.

Read on to discover more about the importance of retainers, how to wear them correctly, and tips for their proper care and maintenance.

What are Retainers?

A retainer is a personalized dental device that fits a person’s mouth. Orthodontists prescribe retainers after treatments like braces to maintain the new position of teeth.

Without a retainer, teeth may shift back to their original alignment. Orthodontists may recommend different types of retainers:

Type of Retainers

Permanent Retainers:

These are bonded to teeth and cannot be removed, offering discreetness but possibly causing discomfort.

Hawley Retainers:

Made of wire and plastic, these are molded to fit the mouth and are removable, making them easy to clean.

Clear Retainers: 

Custom-made from a precise replica of the teeth, these are nearly invisible, making them a popular choice among users.

What Makes Me a Candidate for Wearing Retainers?

If you’re an individual undergone orthodontic treatments like braces to straighten your teeth, then you must wear teeth retainers. The main purpose of retainers is to maintain the corrected alignment of the teeth after the completion of orthodontic treatment. They help prevent the teeth from shifting back to their original positions, ensuring that the results of the treatment are preserved in the long term. Orthodontists typically recommend retainers as part of the post-treatment care plan to ensure the stability and longevity of the orthodontic corrections.

How are Teeth Retainers Fitted?

The process for making the retainer for your teeth depends on the type of retainer.

For Removable Retainers:

  1. The provider takes a dental impression of your teeth by using dental putty, a soft material similar to play dough.
  2. Then, insert the trays over your teeth. This imprints your bite and teeth layout into the putty. It takes one or two minutes to make an impression on your mouth.
  3. A dental laboratory uses the mold to make a plastic (or acrylic) teeth retainer. Then, it takes a week or more before getting the retainer.

For Fixed Retainers:

  1. Your dental provider measures the correct placement of your teeth using a metal wire.
  2. They use adhesive to set the wire in place securely.
  3. This process is more intricate and time-consuming compared to making an impression for a removable retainer. However, leaving the dental office with your retainer already in place eliminates the need to wait for a laboratory to create the retainer.

Duration of Use

The duration of retainer wear varies based on the individual’s treatment plan. Some may attach permanent retainers to their teeth, while others may receive removable ones. Orthodontists may advise wearing a removable retainer nearly 24 hours a day for the first 4–6 months, then transition to nighttime use after. Most suggest continuous wear for at least 9 months, with eventual nighttime use. Dentists typically recommend wearing the retainer for 12 months or longer, adjusting the duration based on individual progress and needs. It’s crucial to follow the orthodontist’s guidance for optimal results and long-term stability.

Precautions while wearing Retainers

It’s crucial to heed the guidance of your dentist or orthodontist regarding your retainer. If any issues arise, contact them promptly for assistance. To ensure proper use of retainers, follow these precautions:

  • Wear the retainers according to your orthodontist’s instructions.
  • Avoid chewing gum or chewing on the retainers.
  • Use both index fingers at the gumline when removing the retainers.
  • Store the retainers in their designated case when not in use.
  • If the retainers cause discomfort, seek advice from your dentist or orthodontist promptly.


Maintaining clean retainers is essential for good oral hygiene. Individuals should consult their dentist or orthodontist for specific cleaning guidelines tailored to their retainers.

Cleaning methods vary based on the type of retainer. For removable retainers, thorough brushing with a toothbrush and toothpaste before and after each use is recommended.

However, cleaning permanent retainers may pose additional challenges. Those with bonded retainers should incorporate brushing into their regular dental care routine and consider using floss threaders for effective flossing.

Proper cleaning practices help minimize the risk of gingivitis and cavities, promoting oral health.

How much does a Teeth straightening Retainer Cost?

A removable retainer ranges from $100 to $500. Clear retainers may be more expensive.

It’s important to note that insurance coverage for orthodontic treatment varies. Some insurance plans offer partial coverage, while others may not cover retainers at all. It’s better to check with your insurance provider to understand what your policy includes.


Teeth straightening retainers are crucial in maintaining the results achieved from orthodontic treatment. Retainers help prevent regression and ensure long-term oral health by keeping your teeth in their correct alignment. Remember to follow your dentist’s instructions for wearing and caring for your retainers to maximize their effectiveness.

Looking for Teeth Straightening Retainers Option in Mt. Vernon, WA

Ready to secure your smile? Schedule an appointment with Diamond Dental in Mt. Vernon, WA, and let us guide you through your retainer journey. New patients can call (360) 512-7258, and current patients can call (360) 848-6777.


The duration of retainer wear varies but typically starts with wearing them full-time and then transitioning to wearing them only at night. Follow your orthodontist’s recommendations for optimal results.

It’s best to remove your retainer before eating or drinking anything other than water to avoid damage and maintain hygiene.

Rinse your retainer with water after each use and brush it gently with a toothbrush and mild soap. Avoid using hot water or harsh chemicals to prevent damage.

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