Braces are hardly greeted positively, so wanting to rid your mouth of any additions post treatment is more than understandable! However, it is possible for the teeth to return to their original position, thus negating the entirety of your brace treatment. That is, unless retainers are used.
What is a retainer?
Put simply, a retainer is a removable device, usually made of plastic and wires, which keeps in place (or ‘retains’) the position of your teeth after brace treatment. Retainers come in the three types: Hawley, Essix and Bonded. Hawley retainers are the best known of the three types and utilise a metal wire that surrounds the teeth to keep them in place, they also have the added benefit of being adjustable for minor tooth movement. Essix retainers are clear, made of PVC and similar in appearance to ‘ invisible’ braces. Bonded retainers consist of a wire that is permanently bonded to the back of your teeth.
It can take months for your teeth to set post-treatment and they will be especially prone to ‘relapse’ after the first month, so it is crucial that you wear a retainer during this period! At this stage your retainer should be worn throughout the day, except for when you eat or brush your teeth. Your dentist will most likely guide you through how long you should wear a retainer in this manner. This period could be anything between two and twelve months, but can, in some circumstances, be more. It is recommended that, following this, the retainer is still worn occasionally, whilst sleeping for instance, to prevent any possible problems from occurring in the future. This goes especially for people with tongue thrust issues!
Remember: Attend your check-ups, listen to your dentist near Foxrock and wear your retainer or all that hard work may be for nought!
Mouthguards can be used for a number of reasons, from protection during contact sport to treating the pain of teeth grinding. Here at Dublin18 Dental care we offer a range of mouth guards to suit individual patient’s needs, which includes:
Many people suffer from teeth grinding for a number of reasons, with anxiety and stress being a main cause of teeth grinding for patients from Dublin18. Patients often grind their teeth at night so are unaware of such behaviour until symptoms of teeth grinding occur, such as a painful jaw and flattening of the teeth.
A nightguard is worn throughout the night whilst the patient sleeps so that if teeth grinding does occurs the teeth and jaws are protected. A nightguard doesn’t solve the problem of why you are teeth grinding but it does stop you causing yourself more harm and injury.
Aggressive contact sports such as rugby and boxing require mouthguards in order to stop any harm or injury from occurring if the person is hit in the mouth or face. Dental injuries can be very severe if a mouthguard is not worn whilst taking part in contact sports. There could be tooth loss or tooth breakage, which can lead to costly dental treatment in the long run.
Essix retainers are made from completely clear plastic and are used after braces have been taken off to prevent the teeth moving back to their old position. Essix retainers are incredibly strong, keeping your teeth in place while you sleep. As well as wearing your Essix retainer during the night they should also be worn for around 4 hours during the daytime, however, they are very comfortable and clear, so no one will be able to see them.
It is very important that you wear your retainer after orthodontic treatment to ensure that your post treatment positioning remains in place and doesn’t revert back to the way they were prior to the treatment.