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Why Retainers Are Important After Orthodontic Treatment?

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Orthodontic treatment using braces or clear aligners can transform a person’s smile and improve dental alignment. However, retainers are required to maintain the results of orthodontic treatment. Here is why using retainers is important after orthodontic treatment in preserving the outcomes achieved.

Maintaining Teeth Position 

little kid with retainer

After the active phase of orthodontic treatment, the teeth require some time to settle into their new positions. Retainers play a vital role in stabilizing the teeth and preventing them from returning back to their original misaligned positions. They naturally tend to move, and without proper retention, they will gradually shift back, compromising the results achieved through orthodontic treatment.

Preventing Relapse 

Orthodontic relapse refers to the undesired movement of teeth after completing orthodontic treatment. This happens due to various factors like genetics, age-related changes, and the natural forces exerted on the teeth during daily activities such as eating and speaking. Wearing retainers as recommended by the orthodontist helps to prevent relapse by providing a consistent force that counteracts the urge of teeth to move back to their original positions.

Allowing Soft Tissues to Adapt 

During orthodontic treatment, the soft tissues surrounding the teeth, such as the gums and ligaments, require time to adapt to the new tooth positions. Retainers provide stability and allow these tissues to adjust and conform to the corrected dental alignment. This helps maintain a balance between the teeth and the supporting structures, ensuring long-term stability.

Supporting Bone Restructuring

After orthodontic treatment, the bone surrounding the teeth restores to adapt to the new tooth positions. Retainers provide a consistent force and allow the bone to remodel and solidify around the teeth in their new alignment. This helps in preserving the stability and long-term success of the orthodontic treatment.

Enhancing Bite Alignment 

Retainers not only maintain the alignment of the front teeth but also play a role in improving the alignment of the bite. Ensuring that the upper and lower teeth fit together correctly, they assist in creating a normal occlusion or bite which is important for proper chewing function, jaw joint health, and overall oral health.

Time Reduction of Retainer Wear 

In most cases, the initial period of wearing retainers is more frequent, typically full-time.  However, as the teeth settle, the orthodontist may gradually reduce the duration of wearing the retainers, allowing the teeth and supporting structures to adapt gradually while still providing the necessary retention required to maintain the results achieved.

Retainers play an essential role in maintaining the results of orthodontic treatment. They stabilize the teeth, prevent relapse, allow soft tissue adaptation, and improve bite alignment. Wearing retainers as recommended by the orthodontist is essential for long-term stability and preserving a beautiful and healthy smile. 

At Dr. Joy Dental Clinic, our team of Specialist Orthodontists will guide you and provide you with the best suitable retainers for making your orthodontic treatment successful. If you’re someone interested in starting your journey to a more beautiful and straighter smile with us, contact 800-DRJOY (37569) to book a consultation with our Specialist Orthodontists.

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