What are the Types of Retainers?

The difference types of retainers mirror the different types of orthodontic corrective appliances. Most often called braces, technology has influenced the types and methods of braces available today. Let’s look at why you would consider wearing braces, the different types of braces now available, and then the different types of retainers available and the benefits of each.

What are the Reasons for Wearing Orthodontic Braces?

There are a number of reasons that might have you consider wearing braces. First and foremost, if your teeth are crooked, they can be straightened. Crooked teeth can definitely change your smile and your smile is a very undervalued personal asset. Your smile has been proven to be linked to your level of self-confidence and self-esteem. This runs through your personal circles as well as social and professional encounters. It can even drive your level of happiness and success. Crooked teeth can disrupt your chewing and biting patterns and cause you to bite the side of your cheek. Crooked teeth may be the result of late eruption of your permanent teeth or incorrect jaw positioning. Your teeth may be crowded, or you may have an overbite or underbite. The application of orthodontic braces can correct all of these issues leaving you with a healthy smile.

The Different Types of Braces Available Today

After a consultation and an evaluation, you can determine which type of appliance will be best for your situation. A traditional set of braces are wire brackets on the teeth holding an arch wire. This arch wire is heated and pulls and pushes the teeth. You can have the same process with ceramic braces, in which the brackets and wire are either tooth-colored or clear. They simply are less noticeable during a smile. A lingual set of metal braces takes the brackets and arch wires to the inside of the teeth. These can be more uncomfortable and take longer for the adjustments. The latest option is driven by digital technology. Clear plastic mouthguard like trays are worn for two-week periods. These trays apply pressure to move the teeth.

Any and all of the methods need to be worn anywhere from 18 months to over two years for the proper correction.

The Types of Retainers Available Today

The different types of retainers mirror the different types of orthodontic appliance used to move your teeth. Like the braces, each and every retainer will be custom made for your mouth and your teeth. Retainers are necessary to protect the efforts you made to move the teeth. There are periodontal fibers that will tug and pull on the teeth to move them back to their original position. Soft tissue can do the same. Retainers hold the teeth in place until those pressures subside. Metal and ceramic retainers are of the fixed variety and often are on the inside of the teeth, so they are not visible. A clear plastic retainer can be removed. In either case the duration of having the retainer is the result of regular evaluations to determine when any movement has subsided. Then you can enjoy your new life changing smile.

More on Retainers : How to Take care of Retainer?