Once you have completed your orthodontic treatment, you’ll receive a retainer that helps you maintain your beautifully aligned teeth. Taking proper care of it is crucial to keep your results. Even long after your treatment, you need to wear your retainer regularly to prevent your teeth from shifting out of place again. Today, we’ll share essential tips for taking care of your retainer and ensuring it remains effective for years.
- Keep It Clean
Cleaning your retainer should now be an added habit to your oral hygiene routine. Otherwise, bacteria can accumulate on your retainer, resulting in oral health issues in the future. Make sure you rinse it after every meal. Then, clean it at least once a day with a soft toothbrush and mild soap or a cleaner specifically designed for retainers. Doing so prevents bacteria buildup and ensures your retainer stays clean and odor-free. Use lukewarm water since hot water damage the retainer’s shape. Make sure you clean the case too!
- Store it Safely
Keep your retainer in the case when you are wearing it. Leaving it exposed or wrapped in a napkin can lead to misplacement or accidental damage. Many people accidentally throw theirs away because it was left on a cafeteria tray or wrapped in a tissue. Keep the case handy so you’re more likely to remember it on the go. Additionally, avoid storing your retainer in your pocket or loose in your bag, as it could quickly become damaged or lost.
- Keep Pets Away
Pets, especially dogs, may be curious about your retainer and mistake it for a chew toy. Keep your retainer safely stored and away from pets to prevent accidental damage. If your retainer is damaged by a pet or lost due to their curiosity, contact us as soon as possible for a replacement.
- Never Share Your Retainer
Your retainer is customized to fit your unique dental structure. So, you don’t want to share yours with anyone, even a family member. If you lose yours, don’t wear someone else’s either. It can cause discomfort and hygiene issues, leading to oral health problems. If you have lost or misplaced your retainer, contact us to get a new one made specifically for you.
- Attend Regular Checkups
You’ll want to visit us regularly for dental checkups every six months (or more often if advised). We can monitor your progress and ensure your retainer continues to fit correctly. Over time, your teeth may shift slightly, and adjustments to your retainer may be necessary to maintain the alignment. Regular checkups also allow us to inspect your retainer for signs of wear and tear and provide timely replacements if needed.
Taking care of your retainer is crucial in maintaining the results of your orthodontic treatment and ensuring beautiful, straight teeth for years to come. By following these essential tips for retainer care, you can keep your retainer in excellent condition and preserve the investment you’ve made in your oral health. Remember, a well-cared-for retainer will help you enjoy the benefits of a confident smile for a lifetime!
Want more personalized tips or need to get a new retainer? Schedule an appointment by calling Denise DiBona, DDS, LLC today at 732-945-5343 or schedule online.