Clear retainers are crucial tools to maintain the integrity of your treatment once you’ve gotten your braces off or completed your Line-M-Up™ process!
Clear retainers are typically made of smooth, BPA-free plastic. They’re customizable and removable, so most people won’t even notice that you’re wearing them at all!
Traditional Hawley retainers made of acrylic and wire are always very effective, but there’s no denying that clear retainers have grown in popularity in recent years amongst both braces and Line-M-Up™ patients.
It’s perfectly normal to have some questions about clear retainers when you or your child are coming into the final stages of orthodontic treatment, and below we’ll be providing some answers to highlight some of the many benefits associated with clear retainers through 6 things that you should keep in mind about them!
1. Clear Retainers Do A Great Job At Preventing Teeth Shifting After Orthodontic Treatment
Both Line-M-Up™ and braces depend upon what’s known as bone remodeling to shift your teeth, which essentially refers to the gentle forces that your appliance exerts on your teeth and oral tissues that then allows your teeth to shift as directed. This technically means that your teeth can shift back to their original places once your treatment has completed!
The only proven way to prevent your teeth from shifting back after orthodontic treatment is to wear a retainer on a daily basis. Your retainer will help you hold your teeth in place as new bone and tissue forms around your teeth, so in many ways your retainer will be a vital tool to locking in a patient’s alignment for the rest of their life.
Clear retainers just so happen to be very effective when it comes to preventing unwanted teeth shifts, and they’ll always go a long way towards maintaining the overall integrity of your treatment results.
2. Clear Retainers Are Comfortable
Clear retainers are always custom-molded for a perfect fit, and they slip over your teeth in a very comfortable fashion. Every retainer type will ultimately be comfortable once you’ve become acclimated to the feel, but a lot of patients find that clear retainers are a little bit easier to adapt to after their treatment ends.
3. Clear Retainers Are Comparable To Line-M-Up™ Aligners
Clear retainers fit within your mouth a lot like Line-M-Up™ aligners do, and the main difference is that your retainer material will be somewhat thicker because it’s meant to last for several years whereas aligner trays are only designed to be worn for a few weeks.
Your clear retainer of course will be oriented towards maintaining your teeth placement as opposed to coercing teeth movements, so they are different in nature even though they look similar.
A lot of patients will transition directly to wearing their retainer only at night while they sleep, so you’ll reap the benefits of the comfort and convenience associated with invisible aligners while sleeping with a clear retainer.
4. You’ll Need To Take Your Clear Retainer Out Prior To Drinking Or Eating
It’s never a good idea to drink beverages or eat a snack/ meal with your clear retainer in your mouth. Hot beverages can warp the plastic of your clear retainer and make it less functional. Food can get trapped within your clear retainer, which can then make you more susceptible to serious dental issues like cavities and tooth staining.
Most people will only wear their retainer while they sleep, however there are certain scenarios in which a patient will need to wear a clear retainer full-time for specified periods of time. This situation will require you to keep a retainer case with you during your daily activities so you’re ready to take it out before meals and snacks.
5. Clear Retainers Are Affordable
It’s a common myth throughout the orthodontic industry that clear retainers are more expensive as compared to traditional retainers like Hawley and permanent retainers. What’s also great about clear retainers is that you won’t have to worry about common damages associated with acrylic pieces and wires, so the odds of needing a replacement retainer are reduced.
It’s important to keep in mind that clear retainers are more expensive if they are lost several times and you need to continuously purchase a new one, which is why you’re going to need to be extra careful about keeping your retainer case on you!
6. Your Retainer Case Is Absolutely Critical
Although it’s very rare for orthodontic patients to experience issues with clear retainers, it doesn’t mean that issues with these retainers are completely non-existent.
The biggest challenge that people have with clear retainers is simply losing them, and a lot of times they’ll be left on a napkin while eating and then are overlooked and thrown out accidentally. The best way to prevent a scenario like this is to keep your retainer case on you on a daily basis and store your clear retainer in the case every time you take it out.
Reach Out To The JK Orthodontics Team To Learn More About Clear Retainers!
JK Orthodontics has helped countless patients throughout the Columbus Metro Area with orthodontic treatment, and we’re always there for our patients after their treatment ends with high-quality retainers and checkups.
Contact us online or call us at 614-766-0330 (Dublin office) or 614-471-6355 (Gahanna office) to get in touch with our team and let us know what questions you have about clear retainers!