Dental Retainers Fort Collins, CO.
Beautiful smiles don’t happen by accident. They require time, effort, and often, orthodontic treatment. Whether you’ve used traditional metal braces or Invisalign aligners, maintaining your new alignment is critical. That’s where dental retainers come in. In the second phase of your orthodontic journey, retainers hold your teeth in their new position, ensuring your smile stays as beautiful as you want it.
At Ray Dental, a leading dental practice in Fort Collins, CO, we provide custom-made retainers to help you maintain your newly straightened teeth.
What Are Dental Retainers?
Retainers are custom-fitted orthodontic appliances that are typically used after braces or Invisalign treatment to prevent your teeth from moving back to their original position. They’re made from a mix of plastic (acrylic) and metal wire, that fit snugly over the top of your teeth.
There are two main types of retainers: removable and permanent. Removable retainers, such as the Hawley retainer or the clear Essix and Vivera retainers, can be taken out during meals and when brushing your teeth. Permanent retainers, on the other hand, are bonded to the back of your teeth and can only be removed by your orthodontist.
How Do Retainers Work?
Orthodontic treatments like braces or Invisalign aligners move your teeth into new positions. But once the braces come off, your teeth can drift back to their original positions due to the elastic fibers in your gum. This phenomenon is known as relapse, and it’s where retainers come into play.
Retainers work by holding your teeth in place, allowing the bone and gums around the teeth to stabilize and adapt to their new positions. This “retention” phase is crucial in the orthodontic process, and it requires wearing a retainer exactly as your orthodontist prescribes.
Not all retainers work the same way. For example, the Hawley retainer, made of bendable wire and acrylic, is adjustable, meaning your orthodontist can fine-tune your tooth alignment. In contrast, clear retainers like Essix and Vivera are not adjustable, but they are less noticeable, providing a discreet way to keep your teeth in place.
How We Create Your Retainer
- Taking the Mold: The first step is to take a mold or impression of your newly straightened teeth. This ensures that your retainer will fit perfectly.
- Creating the Retainer: The mold is then sent to a dental lab where your custom retainer, whether a Hawley, Essix, Vivera, or a permanent retainer, is created.
- Fitting and Adjustments: Once ready, your orthodontist will fit the retainer in your mouth and make any necessary adjustments for comfort.
Why Do Retainers Matter?
- Preventing Movement: Retainers help maintain the results of your orthodontic treatment by preventing your teeth from moving back to their original position.
- Protecting Your Investment: Orthodontic treatment isn’t cheap. Wearing a retainer ensures that the money and time you’ve invested in achieving a beautiful smile are not wasted.
- Helping Speech: In some cases, retainers can help improve speech problems by keeping your teeth in an optimal position.
- Aiding in Hygiene: Straight teeth are easier to clean, which can lead to improved oral hygiene and decreased risk of gum disease and cavities.
Trust Ray Dental To Help You With Your Retainer
At Ray Dental in Fort Collins, CO, we understand the importance of retaining the results of your orthodontic treatment. Our dentist will work with you to develop a durable retainer for both your upper and lower teeth (if necessary) to help you retain the optimal tooth position that we have worked so hard to craft.
We have multiple treatment options available, but our goal is to provide a custom-fit retainer that can preserve your smile with the best results for years to come. Give us a call today to schedule an appointment!