Retention

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When we remove your braces, we will begin the retention stage of your treatment. Your final orthodontic result depends on your retainers, so follow through with the hard work you've put in so far.

DOs and DON'Ts:

Please wear your retainers full-time for the first 8 weeks. This means only take them out to eat, to brush and floss your teeth, to swim, and to play any contact sports. You may wear them when drinking, but only if the drink is not hot. At the end of these 8 weeks, Dr. Ashcraft will see you to adjust your retainers (they should be loose by then) and you may start wearing them at night only. Each time you brush your teeth, brush your retainers to freshen them up. In the event that you are placed on antibiotics by your physician, you will want to put a few drops of bleach in a cup of water and place your retainers in this solution for one minute. Then rinse your retainers with plain water and brush them as well. This process should be done daily, until your antibiotic treatment is completed.

If they are not in your mouth, they should be in your case only. No wrapping them in napkins (they will get thrown away), putting them in your pocket (they will bend and/or break), or leaving them on your tray or the table at meal times (they will be thrown away). You may have extra saliva for a few days and your speech will be slightly different until your brain and tongue get used to this new object in your mouth. To shorten this adjustment time, you can read a book aloud, sing along with the songs on the radio, or just talk to someone else. Always remove your retainers by gently pulling down on the loops on the wire (of the upper) and gently pulling up on the loops on the wire (of the lower). Never pull on the center of the wire. You should always be sure that your retainers are seated completely. Do not allow them to “flop” around.

Don't leave your retainers in a hot car or put in hot water (such as a boiling them or putting them into the dishwasher.) They are heat sensitive so they will warp or melt.

Don't leave them where babies or pets can reach them. Dogs will even chew through the case to get them. They smell like you and pets and babies like you!