Over the course of time, your braces and adjustment sessions have realigned your teeth for a more function mouth and visually appealing smile. However, even once your braces are removed there will still be a little residual tension in the periodontal ligaments that anchor your teeth.
Without using a retainer this residual tension will actually start to pull your teeth out of alignment. This process is known as relapse. We can fit you for a retainer during the same session where your braces are removed. This usually involves taking a few x-rays and making a bite impression.
Hawley-style retainers are the most common type of retainer. This is a removable, thin piece of molded acrylic that matches the shape of the roof of your mouth and attaches to your teeth with wires.
It’s not uncommon for your mouth to produce some excess saliva for a few days after you start wearing a retainer. After a while your mouth will adapt and saliva production should return to normal. You should expect to wear your retainer for about as long as you were wearing braces.
If you are due to have your braces removed and you have questions about getting a retainer, please feel free to call us at (505) 325-8858 to schedule an appointment.