When You Actually Wear Your Retainer You Know Your Sh*t Is Together
I have a confession to make: I still wear my retainer.
I haven’t had braces since eighth grade, but each night, I dutifully pop that nasty plastic pink device onto the roof of my mouth before I climb into bed.
I’m probably the only person in her 20s who has actually listened to her dentist or who hasn’t lost the damn thing yet.
Throughout college, I was always the sole wearer of the retainer, and at night, I feared walking down my dorm hallway to the communal bathrooms.
What if I bumped into a cute guy or a group of people I knew who were coming back from a party?
What if they said hi to me, and my response was just an unintelligible mash-up of lisps and saliva?
Forget fearing being seen without makeup I feared being seen wearing my retainer.
And, God forbid, if I forget to put my retainer in for a mere two or three days, my two front teeth begin to separate, revealing the terrible SpongeBob-esque space that had plagued me during my pre-braces era.
I always dreaded sleeping over guys’ apartments because I didn’t want to know what would happen to my two front teeth the next morning. I didn’t want Spongebob to reappear.
In fact, I once ran into my ex-boyfriend from high school after I hadn’t worn my retainer for a few nights, and he asked me when the last time I put my retainer in was.
That, ladies and gentlemen, is how noticeable it is when I don’t wear it.
My retainer is the perfect metaphor for how my sh*t gets kept together.
Wear The Retainer By Day
Even though most retainers will be provided based on overnight wear, consider occasionally wearing your retainer by day. You can experience issues by not wearing your retainer enough, but its rare for a retainer to be worn too much.
The primary purpose of this exercise is to get your mouth used to the retainer. That can be imperative when youre initially fitted for the mouthpiece. It may feel strange and uncomfortable to wear the retainer. If so, your mouth may instinctively reject it.
Pop in the retainer when youre passive, just as you would be during sleep. Try it for the hour or so before bed when youre unwinding, simply reading a book or watching TV, or during a workout where youll not be focused on the retainer.
You cant wear a retainer 24/7, so dont attempt that. You risk damaging the retainer if you wear it while eating, drinking, or brushing your teeth. Your retainer will also need to be cleaned periodically. The more you wear it, the more natural itll feel.
Shortly Before I Turned Fourteen The Time Finally Came For Me To Exchange My Metal Mouth For A Pair Of Retainers
Choosing their customizable colors was a particularly proud moment, a sign of the endless possibilities for personal expression. I was no longer weighed down by brackets and wires. For the top retainer, I selected a simple cobalt blue. For the bottom, I stuck with cobalt on one-half, and to be daring, went with a burnt yellow on the other simply because I could.
Sleek and gleaming, each retainer could be popped in and out with a flick of the tongue, accompanied by a satisfying click as metal and plastic latched onto or sprang free from my teeth. I followed the standard orthodontic prescription to wear my retainers daily, day and night, for those first six months, removing them only while eating or brushing my teeth. After that, my previously purchased, perfect smile would be secured, and Id only have to wear my retainers while I slept but for life.
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Can Wearing Retainers At Night Affect Sleep Quality
Besides being uncomfortable, does wearing retainers at night cause any effects like sleep apnea?
I’m wondering this because I’ve woken up with dry mouth multiple times after sleeping with my retainer, which is also a symptom of sleep apnea. Of course, having just one symptom doesn’t mean much, but almost every time I use retainers, this happens, so I’ve begun to wonder.
What are the known side effects of sleeping with a retainer?
- 1Are you asking if retainers cause sleep apnea specifically or just poor quality of sleep? They’re not at all the same thing.Jan 28, 2016 at 0:51
- 1 Dave LiuJan 28, 2016 at 22:16
- This quite highly upvoted Q is in the close queue now. Dave, please try to edit and salvage it.Mar 13, 2018 at 19:23
- Unsure myself, but “I”parts and maybe prior research?
A systematic review of the side effects of retainers said nothing about sleep related side effects, so they probably are not a significant problem. There are a few related studies that look at an assortment of othodontic treatments and how they affect sleep. I’ve included them below. An orthodontist would be able to give a more concrete answer.
Also, note that some types of retainers are actually used to treat sleep apnea and related sleep issues .
TLDR Orthodontic treatments such as braces and and retainers can, in general, affect sleep and sleep quality . However, there seems to be little direct research into what specific sleep related side affects retainers cause.
How Long Do I Have To Wear My Retainer
Posted in Blog
Your retainer is almost as important a part of your orthodontic treatment as your braces are. Heres some information on how long they need to be worn.
At Orthostyle Calgary, we know that each patient is different, and we customize each orthodontic treatment plan to the patients unique needs. And the same goes for retainers.
Every orthodontic patient needs to wear a retainer, but the duration and frequency of wear can vary significantly from person to person.
Here are the typical phases of retainer wear:
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How Long Should I Wear Retainers In A Day
When you first get your braces off or finish your clear aligner treatment, your orthodontist will provide instructions for retainer wear. For the first few months, most patients will wear their removable retainers full-time, day and night, removing only for meals and drinking, and to brush their teeth and clean the retainers.
In certain cases, the orthodontists may instruct you to wear retainers only at night and to switch to full-time wear if you notice some shifting.
Some minor shifting of your teeth is normal after orthodontic treatment: this is called dental settling. Even with proper retainer wear, there will still be minor shifting as the teeth settle into their permanent positions. If the retainer is fitting well, you dont need to worry about this minor shifting but contact your orthodontist if you have any questions or concerns or if your retainer isnt fitting right.
When you reduce retainer to wear to nightly use, youll store your retainer safely in a case for the day, and then put the retainer in after brushing your teeth to sleep. Wear them all night long while you sleep, and wash them gently every morning before putting them back in the case.
When Should You Wear A Retainer
After your braces come off, you may notice that your teeth move back to their original position over time. To ensure the stability of your teeth after any orthodontic treatment you should wear a retainer. Usually, an orthodontist recommends wearing a retainer for at least six months after braces. If you wish to wear them all the time, you can do so.
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Keep Your Nasal Airways Clear
It takes a lot of effort to get used to a retainer in your mouth, especially when sleeping.
The first few times you wear the retainer, itll feel very strange. You may start to panic when nodding off to sleep, worrying that the retainer prevents you from breathing correctly.
Part of this will be due to saliva building in your mouth. Your throat needs to adjust to learning to swallow again without choking. Avoid sleeping on your back when new to wearing a retainer to be on the safe side.
Sleeping on your side also opens the nasal passages, making breathing easier. Even if youre not aware of it, youll feel more comfortable taking up this position. Consider propping yourself up on an extra pillow for even greater breathing opportunities.
Do You Have To Wear A Retainer Forever
After 12 months of continuous retainer wear, we often recommend that you to continue to wear your retainers at night 3-5 times a week for life. The reason we recommend this cycle of wear is due to the slow shifting of teeth forward and inward as we get older.
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How Long Do You Have To Wear A Retainer Advice From Dentist
The end of your long orthodontic treatment could be exciting, but you may be left with one big question about how long do you have to wear a retainer?
Your orthodontist designs a retainer to hold teeth in place after braces are removed. Retainers are usually made in either removable or fixed retainer types. They both serve the same purpose.
In this Dbd guide we are going to discuss when and why should you wear a retainer. You will also find information about how long you have to wear a retainer according to its type. Additionally, we hope frequently asked questions about retainers in the article will help you to get a better insight into the topic.
What Will Happen When My Doctor Take Off My Retainers
When your doctor takes off your retainers, they will most likely give you a retainer schedule. This is the time frame during which you should wear your retainers less and less. Generally, after the initial six-month period of wearing them full-time, people switch to part-time wear for another six months.
After that, it\s generally safe to stop wearing them altogether . If you don\t follow this schedule, your teeth may move back into their original position meaning you might have to go through another round of orthodontic treatment!
If you feel like you\re not wearing your retainers enough, talk to your orthodontist. They may be able to give you a more lenient wear schedule .
It\s also important to note that retainers should be kept clean just like your braces! Brushing them with toothpaste and water after every meal is generally sufficient. If they start to look dirty or cloudy, you can soak them in denture cleaner or even mouthwash.
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Do You Have To Wear Retainers For Life
Your orthodontist will determine whether you will need life-long retainer therapy or not. If your teeth tend to shift back into their old positions after many years of braces treatment. It may be mandatory for you to wear retainers for life. But this is a very rare case. But, wearing removable retainers every night for the rest of your life will keep your straight teeth from moving. You will always have a perfect smile.
Why Do I Take My Retainer Out In My Sleep
In theory, retainers should be a perfect fit for your teeth, so your retainer shouldnt fall out while youre sleeping. It remains possible, though. Equally, you may remove your retainer overnight in your sleep, even if you do not realize youre doing so.
You may be pushing your retainer out of position with your teeth. Youll find your retainer on your pillow or elsewhere in the bed in this instance. Alternatively, you may find the retainer in your hand, suggesting you lifted the retainer out manually.
If you wake up with your retainer out of place, you probably wont remember why. The removal of the retainer could have been a panicked reaction from your subconscious. If the retainer feels like it is restricting essential airflow, your body will react instinctively. Alternatively, it may simply be due to old-fashioned discomfort.
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What Is A Retainer
A retainer is a device that is used to keep teeth in their new position after orthodontic treatment. There are different types of retainers, but the most common type is the removable retainer.
A removable: retainer is a clear plastic tray that fits over your teeth and is held in place by friction. There are also fixed retainers which are made of metal wires and brackets that are attached to the back of your teeth.
Fixed retainers: are more commonly used for adults because they offer more stability than removable retainers. However, both types of retainers are effective at keeping teeth in their new position.
Who Needs To Wear A Retainer
Retainers are a little more common than youd expect. Lots of people end up wearing them. In fact, theyre a staple item in many different orthodontic treatments:
- Braces: Even though braces are widely regarded as the most powerful orthodontic treatment method available, they still require you to wear retainers after treatment.
- Invisalign: Invisalign first introduced their clear aligners as an alternative to braces in the 90s, and theyre still going strong. But after wearing your last aligner, youll still switch to a retainer.
- Home aligners: Home aligner companies will ship you clear aligners directly to your door so you dont have to visit the orthodontist. As part of your treatment kit, theyll also send you your first set of post-treatment retainers, too.
- Orthodontic surgeries: Sometimes, orthodontists will need to pull out all the stops to correct a severe issue like overbite, underbite, crossbite, and more. Once your incisions have healed enough, your orthodontist may have you wear a retainer to keep everything in place.
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Moisten The Retainer Before Wearing It
If your retainer is bone dry, itll become increasingly uncomfortable in your mouth. A dry retainer will also encourage the growth of bacteria within your mouth, leading to plaque and other oral ailments. Enhance comfort by moistening the retainer before use.
Be careful what you use to moisten a retainer. A small amount of cold water is fine dont leave the retainer soaking, and dont apply toothpaste to it. This will potentially damage the wires and rust the metal, shortening the retainers lifespan.
You should also regularly sip at plain water when wearing a retainer. This will aid hydration and keep the retainer neat between more intense cleans.
How Long Will I Need To Wear A Retainer After Invisalign
This probably isnt what you want to hear, but you will need to wear your retainers for the rest of your life. After thinking about Invisalign in terms of treatment times, this can come as a shock, but it isnt bad once you get into the rhythm of things. And if you were treated with Invisalign, you likely already are.
If you choose a removable retainer, you will need to keep it in for at least 22 hours a day every day for the first 12-24 months after treatment. Once your teeth seem to have firmed up into place, your dentist or orthodontist will ask you to switch to wearing your retainers only at night.
You will continue to wear your retainers every night for some time, likely another 12 to 24 months. Then, you will be able to switch to wearing them every other night.
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Take Care Of Your Removable Retainers
Retainers you can pop in your mouth and remove again are easy to wear and clean. But they’re also easy to neglect, and doing so could come with serious consequences.
To take care of your retainers, you must:
Retainers aren’t cheap. Researchers say a standard, wire retainer can cost up to $340. Some companies offer a retainer as part of your treatment package. But replacement tools usually come with a price tag.
Take care of your retainers, and they’re likely to keep your smile as gleaming as possible. If you notice that your teeth keep moving, despite wearing your retainers, a conversation with your dental team is appropriate.
You might need a new retainer that keeps your teeth in the right spot, or you might need to wear your retainers for longer each day. Your team can tell you more about what you need to do.
What If You Need A Retainer
This is great news for most sufferers but what if, like many Americans, you also wear a retainer at night? We are often asked this question by our customers. No one wants to have to choose between keeping their smile white and protecting their teeth from grinding. The good news is that you dont have to. With our wide variety of teeth grinding and retainer solutions, there are two options for sufferers of bruxism who also need to protect their teeth alignment.
Essix Plus Retainers
The first port of call for teeth grinders who need a retainer is trying an Essix Plus retainer. The new Essix plus material is much more wear-resistant than the standard Essix material. Essix plus retainers will be able to take moderate teeth grinding without wearing through and needing regular replacement.
Essix Plus retainers from SportingSmiles offers the best of both worlds when it comes to keeping your alignment and protecting your teeth from the damage associated with teeth grinding.
The beauty of this solution is that you dont need to purchase two products or make a choice between protecting your enamel or your alignment. Unfortunately, if you are a heavy teeth grinder you will have to explore other options.
Hard Night Guard and a Retainer
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Teeth Grinding And Orthodontics
A quarter of the people who suffer from OSA also grind their teeth at night. Its a condition called bruxism, and you might not even know youre doing it, but there are some telltale signs. You may wake up with a headache or a sore jaw, even some bruising. You may also feel fatigued throughout the day, even if you think you slept through the night.
If you grind your teeth, whether or not you also have OSA, youre doing a great deal of damage to your teeth. The sustained force over time wears down the enamel and leads to cracks and fractures and eventually decay. It also changes the surface area of your teeth and throws your bite out of alignment, which in turn affects your jaw.
We can help put a stop to your bruxism by either alleviating your sleep apnea or by custom-fitting a mouthguard for you to wear at night to protect your teeth and your sleep.