Dental Retainer

Dental retainer helps prevent teeth relapse after orthodontic treatment and is of two types, namely temporary and permanent. Temporary retainers include Hawleys and clear plastic retainers, and these can be easily removed, cleaned, and placed back by the patient itself. Permanent retainers consist of a braided wire cemented to the lingual or palatal aspect of the front tooth.

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My retainers are not comfortable to be worn. Does relapse occur if the retainer is not worn?

Query: Hello doctor, I have recently got my braces removed and have got retainers, but the retainers are not comfortable. So I wanted to ask whether the teeth will move again the same way they were before getting braces or if the teeth will move differently as I am uncomfortable wearing the retainers. So I...  Read Full »

Dr. Alfiya K Jamal

Answer: Hi,Welcome to After orthodontics treatment, the relapse rate is very high. That is, there is an increased chance that the tooth will return to its previous position because the tooth and the tissue holding the tooth are loose. So it is very important that you wear a retainer compulsoril...  Read Full »

Will my teeth shift badly if I remove my braces two days before completion of the treatment?

Query: Hello doctor,My top wires were bothering me; they were poking me, so I removed the wires with pliers. I get my braces off next week. Between that time, will my teeth shift? If so, how bad?  Read Full »

Dr. Mayank Khandelwal

Answer: Hi, Welcome to Hope you are doing well. Sorry to hear about wire poking you. As you will be off your braces in two days and have removed the wire, it should not change much. There are high chances it will remain the same. What you have to take care of now is the retention part. Retai...  Read Full »

Can Class II elastics correct my mal-aligned lower teeth?

Query: Hello doctor, I have been wearing braces for about three years now, and I am getting them off in a few months. I am wearing Class II elastics, but I found my lower teeth are tilted: the left is higher than the right. How can I use elastics to correct this?  Read Full »

Dr. Mayank Khandelwal

Answer: Hi, Welcome to Class II elastics are given mainly to correct the anteroposterior relations (meaning front back relations) mainly of molars and canines. Apart from these, they might also be used to settle the occlusion properly as desired. Before proceeding to answer your specific que...  Read Full »

Are plastic retainers bad due to exposure and leaching of chemicals?

Query: Hello doctor, I have been wearing a plastic retainer each night for roughly ten years. I worry about the long-term health effects of plastics leaching chemicals and microplastics. I wonder if a removable silver or gold grill would do a similar job as a plastic retainer without the potential exposure...  Read Full »

Dr. Mayank Khandelwal

Answer: Hello,Welcome to icliniq.comGreetings of the day. I hope you are doing well. Wearing the same plastic retainer for ten years is a long time. You are spot on with your concern regarding the effects of retainers. All your worries regarding the leaching of chemicals and degradation of materials are val...  Read Full »

Is resizing of retainer necessary after getting a new crown?

Query: Hello doctor,I am a former patient of braces. I have gotten a crown on one of my teeth after braces, and I am not sure if I need to get a new retainer, get a resizing to fit my crown and my other teeth, or neither. To be honest, I have not been the best with my retainers, but I am not sure if that w...  Read Full »

Dr. Mayank Khandelwal

Answer: Hi, Wecome to Retainers are an essential part of orthodontic treatment as they keep all the corrections achieved during the orthodontic treatment intact till bones and surrounding tissues mature. In general, it takes approximately one year for this process to complete since the end of...  Read Full »

When I went to fit the new crown, the dentist cut part of my retainer. Should I be concerned?

Query: Hello doctor,I got a root canal on my #32, and when I went to fit the new crown, my dentist cut part of my clear plastic bottom retainer. It does not bother me when I wear them, but I am concerned that now my back tooth is not fully covered. The other side of my bottom last tooth is fully covered by...  Read Full »

Dr. Mayank Khandelwal

Answer: Hello, Welcome to I hope you are doing well. Retainers are a very important part of orthodontic treatment as they keep all the corrections achieved during the orthodontic treatment intact till bones and surrounding tissues mature. In general, it takes approximately one year for this ...  Read Full »

The gaps between my teeth reappeared as I discontinued wearing retainers. Can you please help?

Query: Hello doctor, I have had braces for three years, and the gaps appeared again when I discontinued the retainer. So, I underwent tooth-bonding, but within a year, it chipped. Do I have to wear braces for the second time?  Read Full »

Dr. Krishna Swaroop Achanta

Answer: Hi, Welcome to I can understand your concern, and I will answer all your doubts. But, first, I want to clarify if only the composite has chipped off or if you have to wear braces again because you discontinued the retainer treatment the first time. To bridge the gap between your teeth...  Read Full »

The spaces are closed after a year of orthodontic treatment. Am I close to taking them off?

Query: Hello doctor,I have had braces for a year. My orthodontist had told me I only needed a closure of one tiny gap left in my top teeth. They initially asked me to book one monthly appointment with them and then two fortnightly appointments. Once the gap is finally closed, how long should I wait to fina...  Read Full »

Dr. Mayank Khandelwal

Answer: Hi, Welcome to I hope you are doing well. It is good to hear that you are on the verge of completing your orthodontic treatment and having a beautiful smile. Based on your appointment schedule, I feel you will be off your braces in about two to three months, depending on when your ne...  Read Full »

Why a gap is forming between my front teeth which I did not have earlier?

Query: Hi doctor,I have started wearing my retainers again after three years (my orthodontist had said that I could stop using them). Initially, it did not fit properly but now after about one week, it fits perfectly fine. Though I think my front two teeth have got a gap between them. I thought that I will...  Read Full »

Dr. Mayank Khandelwal

Answer: Hi,Welcome to are of various types. Please share what kind of retainers are you having, Hawley's (single wire retainers) or Essix retainers (transparent retainers).There was a bit of difficulty for you to put on retainers after three years as your teeth would have shifted a bit...  Read Full »

I did not use retainers after my previous treatment, and I want braces now. Will it shorten my teeth?

Query: Hello doctor, I have misaligned teeth as I had not used a retainer after using braces 16 years ago. Yesterday, the orthodontist informed me that I am not a selective patient for braces because of some root canal treatments I had. I have been told that it may shorten the roots of teeth. I have had th...  Read Full »

Dr. Mayank Khandelwal

Answer: Hello, Welcome to Thanks for writing in, and I understand your concern. Braces treatment may cause root resorption that shortens roots but does not occur in all cases. In my opinion, root resorption can reverse and resolve over time if detected early, and not all cases show the sh...  Read Full »

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