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You and your braces are going to be together for a while. You might not describe it as a meaningful relationship, but your braces will be around for many months, and perhaps even for a year or so. Be that as it may, eventually, the day will come when it will be time to take them off. At that point, you will be at an important milestone: the transition from braces to a retainer.

Although your braces have done the hard work of moving your teeth into their new positions, they still have not completely settled into these places. The ligaments in your jaw have not gotten used to their new places, either, which is why your dentist will give you a retainer. There is no set time for wearing a retainer. Everyone wears their retainer for a different length of time, but it is very important that you wear your retainer for as long as your dentist instructs you to do so. If you don’t, your teeth can drift out of alignment and undo all of the work accomplished by your braces.

If your dentist decides to give you a fixed retainer, which is a wire cemented behind your teeth, you will need to brush it and floss it when you brush your teeth. You may have to use a floss threader or a water flosser to reach your retainer.

If you have a removable retainer, you should gently clean it with solution of vinegar and water. You will need to take it out when playing sports or to soak it at night. Your dentist will give you a case for your retainer, and if you need to take your retainer out, you should put it in that container. Get in the habit of keeping your container in your pocket, purse, backpack or briefcase. Retainers are expensive to replace, and you want to make sure you know where it is at all times.

If your dentist has suggested that you or your child get braces, our dentist, Dr. Ami Desai would love to meet your for an exam and a consultation. If you live in the Suwanee, Georgia, area and would like to make an appointment at Family Dentistry and Orthodontics, give us a call today at 770-232-2783.