What To Know About Dental Retainers in Huntington Beach, CA

Keep your smile perfect with our dental retainers in Huntington Beach, California—book an appointment today by calling 714-897-8980!

Most people feel a keen sense of relief when they finally finish their orthodontic treatment. However, even if you have a perfect smile right now, teeth still inevitably move around slowly in your mouth. That’s why our dentists at TLC Family Dentistry strongly recommend dental retainers in Huntington Beach, CA, to ensure your teeth stay in position for life.

Types of Retainers

Whether you used traditional metal braces or Invisalign as your orthodontic treatment option, dental retainers in Huntington Beach, CA, are an essential part of maintaining your new smile. Our dentists at TLC Family Dentistry will discuss various options and help you choose the right retainer for your particular situation.

Removable Retainers

Removable retainers are often made from clear plastic and look similar to Invisalign adjusters or traditional mouthguards. The main advantage of these retainers is that they are discreet and relatively comfortable to wear. However, they do affect your bite pattern, and your top and bottom teeth will never touch. Some patients also find them tricky to clean, and you may get food, drink, or saliva stuck between the retainer and your teeth.

An alternative to these clear plastic retainers is the Hawley retainer. This type of retainer uses a clear acrylic structure and metal wires to sit firmly against your teeth and keep them in position. These retainers are adjustable, easy to clean, and allow your teeth to touch. The main drawback is that the retainers may feel uncomfortable at first, and many people need time to adjust their speaking patterns with their new retainer.

Bonded Retainers

Bonded retainers are a semi-permanent structure to help keep your teeth in place. The dentist will glue the retainer to the back of your teeth to ensure they remain in position. These retainers are invisible to other people, but they take a bit of getting used to when first installed.

Retainer Schedule

Dental retainers in Huntington Beach, CA, help maintain your new tooth alignment until they anchor completely. Your TLC Family Dentistry dentist will give you a schedule for how often you should wear your retainer. Initially, we strongly recommend wearing it for at least 22 hours a day, only removing it when eating or brushing your teeth.

After six months of treatment, you can start wearing your retainer less, usually only while you sleep. As long as you wear it around eight hours per day, it will provide enough support to keep your teeth in place.

A year after your orthodontic treatment, you can reduce your retainer time to around 16 hours per week or two nights per week. Teeth never stop wanting to move around, so occasionally wearing your retainer will ensure that they stay in perfect position. If you want to retain your Orange County sunny smile, keeping up with your retainer schedule will help you achieve your goals.

Caring for Your Retainer

No matter what type of retainer you have, you’ll need to take care of it to maintain your oral health. Bacteria and plaque can quickly accumulate in the crevices of your retainer, leading to potential tooth decay and other dental issues.

A good habit is to take out your retainer when eating. While it’s possible to eat with a retainer, it means more cleaning time to remove all the food particles. While there are plenty of retainer cleaning products on the market, you may clean your acrylic retainer with some toothpaste and a toothbrush during your normal oral care routine.

We recommend avoiding a toothbrush on plastic retainers since they’re prone to scratching. Scratches are great places for bacteria to hide. Instead, clean them under hot water and use a soft rag to remove any particles.

If brushing your retainer seems like too much work, you can also use one of the many products available to clean your retainer passively.

No matter what method you choose, it’s vital to keep your dental retainers clean. If they start looking worn or dirty, give TLC Family Dentistry a call, and we’ll arrange a replacement retainer for you.

Contact TLC Family Dentistry 

While the idea of wearing another set of orthodontic appliances after your initial treatment may feel daunting, it’s a necessary process. Retainers help maintain the smile you’ve worked so hard to get, and they’re more comfortable and convenient than traditional metal braces.

If you’re at the end of your orthodontic treatment, give TLC Family Dentistry a call at 714-897-8980. We’ll help you find the right dental retainers in Huntington Beach, CA, to maintain your perfect smile.

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