Retainers are an essential oral appliance following orthodontic treatment, designed to maintain the alignment of your teeth and help you keep your smile properly aligned. Our experienced orthodontists and team will work closely with you to select the right type of retainer, ensuring your smile stays perfect for years to come.

It is common for teeth to gradually shift after orthodontic treatment is completed. This natural movement can compromise the alignment of your smile. Retainers work by stabilizing your teeth in their new position, preventing them from moving and ensuring that you can continue to enjoy the benefits of your newly aligned smile. There are several types of retainers available:

  • Clear Retainers: Made from a transparent plastic material, clear retainers fit snugly over your teeth, making them virtually invisible. This type of retainer is quite popular, and is often preferred for its aesthetics but might need replacement over time due to wear. Clear retainers are more effective at retaining teeth in all three dimensions, as they surround the teeth completely.
  • Fixed Retainers: Also known as permanent retainers, these are bonded to the backside of the front teeth. They are a great option for patients with a high risk of tooth movement post-treatment. Fixed retainers are very discreet but require diligent cleaning to maintain good oral hygiene. Like braces, “permanent” retainers can become dislodged and can even be broken if not properly cared for or while eating certain foods. If you do not trust yourself or your child to wear retainers consistently, a fixed retainer may be the best option. However, they will not retain significant changes to the positions of the back teeth.
  • Hawley Retainers: These retainers consist of a metal wire that surrounds the teeth, attached to a sturdy acrylic base that sits on the roof of the mouth. The acrylic base provides a customizable fit. The wire helps in maintaining the alignment of your teeth as well as maintaining width gained from significant expansion, but are not as effective at retaining teeth in all three dimensions. Hawley retainers are durable and adjustable, but they are more noticeable than other types.

Dr. Kurt Bray and Dr. Robert Olsen will evaluate your teeth and discuss your options with you to find the right type of retainer for your lifestyle and smile. We will also provide you with instructions on how to care for your retainer and keep it in good condition after receiving it.

Contact The Brace Place today at 406-752-8686 or 406-75-ORTHO to schedule your appointment and learn more about how retainers in Kalispell, Montana, can help you maintain your smile!

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