After we finish celebrating getting your braces off, we spend the time needed to make sure you can preserve and retain your stunning orthodontic results. Once we remove your braces, we will move into the retention stage of your treatment. Here at our Bethesda and Laurel orthodontics offices, we emphasize the importance of maintaining the results you achieved during the treatment phase, which is the key to the success of the entire orthodontic process. Your retention phase will typically last for a minimum of 24 months. Your teeth are most likely to move during this time, as new bone is forming around the roots of your teeth. Your final orthodontic result depends on your retainers, so follow through with the hard work you've put in so far.

Types of Retainers

There are three types of retainers after you get your braces removed: Hawley, Fixed and Essix retainers. Choosing the type of retainer is usually associated with the individuals needs of each patient, the desires of the patient and the overall maintenance and upkeep that is expected of the patient. 

Hawley Retainers

The Hawley retainer, one of the most common types, is a removable retainer made of a combination of metal wires and sturdy acrylic, and is designed to keep your teeth in place. This retainer is specially made from impressions of your teeth so that it fits snugly and comfortably in the roof of your mouth, while any wire or acrylic framing keeps your teeth in perfect position. The acrylic can also be personalized with a large number of colors and/or patterns.

Fixed Retainers

Fixed retainerBonded lingual retainers are cemented directly to the inside surface of your lower canines (eye teeth). This is one of the best ways to prevent your lower teeth from shifting as it is permanently attached! As with removable retainers, it is important to keep them clean. When brushing, carefully clean the inside of your lower teeth as well as the wire. If your retainer breaks at any time during the retention phase, please do not adjust it yourself. Call us immediately to schedule an emergency appointment.

Essix Retainer

Essix retainer.The Essix retainer is a clear removable retainer that fits over the entire arch of teeth. Essix retainers have no metal wires and are virtually invisible. They are very durable, inexpensive and easy to wear.

Contact Heller Orthodontics!

Heller Orthodontic, your local Bethesda and Laurel orthodontist, wants to ensure that your investment in your teeth does not go to waste. If you have any further questions or concerns about the retention process and maintaining your smile, please feel free to contact us. If you are interested in any of the orthodontic treatments we offer, such as Invisalign, adult and early treatment, you can continue browsing our site or directly request an appointment online. We look forward to your visit because here at Heller Orthodontics your smile is our passion! 

Heller Orthodontics

  • Bethesda Office - 4350 East West Hwy. Suite 120, Bethesda, MD 20814 Phone: (301) 654-5433 Fax: (301) 657-8403
  • Laurel Office - 9811 Mallard Drive Suite 201, Laurel, MD 20708 Phone: (301) 490-2882 Fax: (301) 490-2882

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