Retainers – Highland Park, IL

Retainers Keep Smiles Stable

sets of retainers sitting on table

Retainers in Highland Park

So the time for your braces has come to an end, but you still want to retain your results.

That’s where retainers come into play.

Retainers play an essential role in ensuring that your teeth and bite stay in proper alignment following years of specialized orthodontic treatment.

Wouldn’t it be nice if your teeth stayed in place like the next door neighbor’s overly trained golden retriever!

Unfortunately, no matter how many times you yell, “stay” your teeth will slowly move out of perfect alignment over time without the help of a retainer.

At Dr. Jessica Cohen Orthodontics, we take the time to mold each patient’s smile and use that same data to create customized retainers in Highland Park, IL.

How much time you will need to wear your retainer will be up to Dr. Cohen.

All of these details will be discussed during your final appointments.

The 2 Types of Retainers

There are actually two types of retainers that we provide for our patients here in Highland Park: removable and fixed retainers.

Dr. Cohen will advise you about which is best for your specific situation.

Fixed Retainers

What did you picture in your mind when you read “fixed retainer?” Some people can get the wrong impression when first hearing about this orthodontic appliance.

The reality is that a fixed retainer is a thin wire that is attached to the back of the lower or upper front teeth. Our orthodontists use a bonding glue that is similar to what we use to attach braces brackets. A fixed retainer tends to produce the best results over the long run, since the wire will hold teeth in perfect formation all day, every day.

Removable Retainers

When it comes to removable retainers, we offer two varieties here in Highland Park, IL. Our preferred option is a clear retainer that resembles an aligner tray from Invisalign or our Impressions treatment system. The other retainer type is the classic combination of wire, acrylic material and clasps.

This type of retainer makes it easier for the patient to clean their teeth, but it does come with extra responsibilities. Our doctors likely will recommend wearing your retainer every night.

Unfortunately, these retainers can be easy to lose and components can sustain permanent damage if exposed to extreme heat. They aren’t inexpensive to replace, so we tell all our patients to establish a specific place to store their removable retainer in order to keep it safe. The retainer case we provide can help!

Using, Storing, and Caring for Your Retainer

Now that you know how important your retainer is, there are a few instructions we need to pass along:

  1. Immediately following the completion of your braces or Invisalign treatment, you’ll be expected to wear your retainer every night.
  2. When putting your retainer in at night, don’t bite down. Use your fingers to gently push the retainer into place.
  3. Make sure to remove your retainer prior to eating, and brush both your teeth and retainer before reinserting. It’s just nasty if you don’t.
  4. Avoid using super hot water when cleaning your retainer, we have seen this warp many retainers.
  5. When you take your retainer out in the morning to start your day, make sure you keep it in the same place, this will be a mental landmark, so you don’t lose it.
  6. Make sure to clean your retainer case as well. It gets dirty too and appreciates some TLC :).
  7. Please don’t leave your retainer lying around in direct sunlight or in a hot place (like your car). This will cause the retainer to warp or worse, melt!
  8. If you have a pet, be careful where your put your retainer, or it could become Fidos new favorite chew toy.

Getting a Replacement Retainer

If you have lost or broken your retainer, please don’t hesitate to call our orthodontic office at (847) 790-4495.

We’ll set up an appointment so that you can get a replacement right away.