Once you finally get your dream smile with orthodontic treatment, you want to make sure that you keep it. That’s where retainers come in. Jonathan Shouhed, DDS, provides high-quality retainers at West LA Orthodontics in order to help his patients maintain their beautiful and properly aligned smiles. To learn more about how a retainer can help keep your teeth in their proper position, schedule a consultation at the practice’s office in Los Angeles near Culver City. You can book your visit by phone or online.
A retainer is an oral appliance that you wear on your teeth to maintain their alignment. Dr. Shouhed at West LA Orthodontics typically prescribes a retainer after you complete the process of straightening your teeth with an orthodontic treatment like traditional metal braces or Invisalign®.
Depending on the particulars of your smile, you might wear your retainer for a few years or even indefinitely. They’re an easy and effective way to make sure that you keep the straight smile that you spent so much time getting with your orthodontic treatment.
There are two categories of retainers: Fixed and removable.
A fixed retainer is a thin wire that’s permanently sealed in place along the back of your lower or upper front teeth. It’s made from an impression that Dr. Shouhed takes of your teeth, so it fits perfectly and remains comfortable in your mouth.
The downside of a fixed retainer is that you need to use a floss threader in order to keep your teeth clean (just like how you have to floss when you’re wearing braces). The upside, however, is that because a fixed retainer holds your teeth in position 24/7, it provides excellent results in maintaining your perfect smile.
You can easily take a removable retainer in or out of your mouth. Dr. Shouhed offers two types of removable retainers for his patients:
A Hawley retainer is composed of a thin wire and clasps that are attached to an acrylic base. The clasps clip on around your back teeth to hold the retainer in position, and the thin wire goes across the front of your upper or lower teeth to maintain your orthodontic alignment.
Hawley retainers are durable and long-lasting. They can sometimes be difficult to speak with at first, but your mouth eventually adjusts with time.
Clear retainers are made of a smooth clear plastic that’s incredibly comfortable and very discreet in your mouth. Clear retainers are the most aesthetically pleasing option, but they can stain and might need replacing more often.
Dr. Shouhed will initially want you to wear your retainer every day, day and night, for the first three months after your orthodontic treatment.
Depending on your condition, and if your teeth aren’t showing any signs of falling out of alignment after three months, you might be able to wear your retainer only at night, or just for a few hours during the day.
Dr. Shouhed believes in making high-quality care available and accessible to all of his patients, so he’s created a unique lifetime retainers program at West LA Orthodontics.
By taking advantage of state-of-the-art orthodontic technology, he’s managed to reduce costs on replacement retainers, and he passes those savings along to you.
Don’t let your dream smile slip away after orthodontic treatment. Even if you had your orthodontic treatment elsewhere, you can still get your retainer from Dr. Shouhed at West LA Orthodontics. Schedule your retainer consultation today by calling the office or booking a visit online.