So, you’ve just had your braces taken off, but it’s not over yet. Post-braces care requires a retainer to keep those teeth straight.
Orthodontists usually require retainers to be worn daily for four to six months while your teeth are at the highest risk of relapsing. After, they are usually required to be kept in for nightly use for an extended period of time.
What is the best type of retainer that’s also comfortable to wear?
Keep reading to find out.
There are three different types of retainers. The first type of retainers we’ll talk about are permanent retainers. These retainers could be lingual wire, fixed, or bonded.
Permanent retainers are put in by an orthodontist in the back portion of the teeth. They are usually kept in for the duration that you’ll need them, but in some cases, they are left in permanently if your teeth are prone to moving.
Unlike braces, permanent retainers are hidden, so they cannot be seen on your teeth. They also do not affect your speech like removable retainers can sometimes do.
The great thing about a permanent retainer is that you do not have to worry about putting it in or removing it. This consistent use will ensure that your teeth will not revert back to their crooked ways.
However, the metal wire in permanent retainers can be a little uncomfortable, especially since you cannot take them out. They are also at more risk of damage when eating certain foods.
Permanent retainers range from 150 to 500 dollars.
There are two different types of removable retainers. These include Hawley retainers and clear retainers.
Hawley retainers are the most commonly used retainer. They are made of plastic or acrylic mold and a metal wire that fits into the top and bottom of your mouth.
Clear retainers are removable like Hawley retainers but they cannot be seen on the teeth, which has a more desirable appearance.
Clear retainers are thinner than Hawley retainers so they also fit much more comfortably in the mouth.
Removable retainers like Hawley and clear retainers can be easily taken out and removed when eating, brushing your teeth, or flossing. They can also be adjusted by an orthodontist at any time to make them tighter or looser.
Since Hawley and clear retainers are not permanently placed in your mouth they may build up with excess saliva or bacteria. It’s important to learn how to clean your retainer to prevent this bacteria from building up.
Hawley retainers cost between 350 to 600 dollars. Clear retainers cost between 400 to 800 dollars depending on the brand.
What Type of Retainer Is Better?
Weighing the pros and cons of both of these retainers, clear retainers seem to be the best option for teeth straightening and comfort. That being said, it’s important to speak with your orthodontist about what option is the best fit for you and weigh these pros and cons for yourself.
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