Each braces adjustment session with Dr. Christopher Liang applied a modest amount of tension to the periodontal ligaments anchoring your teeth in place. The gradual stretching was progressive and now your teeth have come into their ideal alignment.
After your braces have been removed, there will still be some residual tension in the ligaments. If it’s not countered in some way, your teeth could come out of alignment, in a process known as relapse. To prevent this from happening Dr. Christopher Liang will fit you for a retainer.
There are a few different retainer options they might recommend depending on the unique details of your mouth and how much realignment was needed.
The most common type of retainer is known as a Hawley. It’s basically a thin acrylic piece molded to the shape of the roof of your mouth. It is removable yet securely attaches to your teeth with wires.
Dr. Christopher Liang might recommend a clear plastic retainer, if your teeth only needed minor adjustment. The clear plastic material makes it hard for people to notice they are even in.
A fixed retainer might be called for if your front teeth, needed a significant amount of realignment. This is a firm metal wire cemented behind your teeth.
It’s natural to experience increased salivation for the first few days after you start wearing a retainer. After a few days your mouth will become accustomed to the retainer and behave normally.
If you are due to have your braces removed and you have questions about the type of retainer you might need, you can call Dr. Christopher Liang’s office in Washington, DC at 202-966-7711 for a consultation.