Retainers, Hawley Retainers, and Clear Retainers

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Mint Orthodontics: A Go-to Guide For Dental Retainer Care

Retainers may seem foreign, but the truth is your retainer is custom-made just for you. This is why you can wear the orthodontic piece with ease. There is an adjustment period, but this guide is meant to help you care for and use your new retainer.

Listen Well

Listening well just means that you need to follow the rules or guidelines set by your orthodontist. He or she knows the specifics of your case and can offer the best guide to get you comfortable with your new orthodontic implement. Do not be surprised to hear that you may need to wear the device for some time.

Eat Away

You might think you will have problems eating, but the truth is you can eat whatever you like. You can do this because the orthodontic piece can be easily dislodged before you eat. Remove the piece, and place it in your dental retainer case. Be sure to put the case in a place that you can easily remember. We say this because many patients seem to lose their orthodontic device at diners and such.

Clean Them Well

The orthodontic device needs a little care, especially general cleaning. You will need to clean them once a day. It is not hard to clean the orthodontic piece since all you need is your toothbrush, dental paste, or a orthodontic-specific produce like Efferdent®. Of course, be mindful of hot water since retainers are sensitive to extreme heat. Do not overlook this task, as it removes plaque, minimizes odors, and deals with bacteria.

Pets and Orthodontic Tools Do Not Mix

Pets have a very keen sense of smell that is simply much better than yours. Retainers may smell like food, especially if you only rinse them. This could be the reason why pets are attracted to them. The answer here is a simple one: keep the orthodontic apparatus in its dental retainer case and away from your pet or pets.

Re-Learn to Speak

You may experience a little discomfort at the beginning that may interfere with the way you speak. You will have an obstructive device in your mouth that you have to get used to. All you have to do is adapt to the apparatus by over-pronouncing words throughout the day, or sing your heart out just for fun. These types of activities have helped some of our patients adapt to the device better.

Why Retainer Care Is Important

You know that you can come to us if anything happens to your orthodontic device, but we encourage proper retainer care. This is done because retainers are breakable. It should also be noted that you can lose them at any time; this may be because they are so small or because you are not used to them, but misplacement happens more than you can imagine. You want to keep your dental device away from anyone who might not care for them, like children. Just make sure you are putting retainer care on the top of your list.

Discomfort is Natural

It might be strange to hear someone say that the device is meant to feel uncomfortable when most of your life any sign of discomfort has been associated with something wrong. It is this belief that makes some patients believe that their apparatus is maladjusted, which could cause that do-it-yourself spirit to emerge. We strongly recommend against this action. Let us determine if the discomfort is normal or if an adjustment is needed.

Stay Side by Side

It may seem silly to advise that you keep your orthodontic device close to you, but it might keep you from losing them. Keep in mind that people lose their wallets, and that is something they are used to carrying around. Imagine how easy it is to forget your Essix retainer or Hawley retainer. Besides, you need to have your orthodontic apparatus whenever you visit us. We do not want you to run back home, or to your car, because you do not have your retainer with you.

Long-Lasting Permanent Retainer

Your permanent retainer is meant to last for years with proper care, and that is what we want for you. We want to make sure that your retainer fee does not become excessive due to unnecessary wear or because the retainer was misplaced. One thing that may help you remember that the retainer is important is to remember that it is there to prevent costly damage to the overall structure of your teeth.

Retainer No-Nos

Keep your dental retainer away from the swimming pool, as that kind of water usually has chemicals that might corrode your apparatus. Swimming means that you will be opening and closing your mouth often, which increases the chances of involuntarily dislodgement. So removing your apparatus before swimming is definitely a good way to avoid an excessive retainer fee.
Hopefully this guide will help you use your Hawley or Essix retainer or any other orthodontic piece that you are using. Do not forget that you have Mint Orthodontics at your disposal, and we are here to help make this entire process a lot easier for you.