Finding the Right Fit: The 3 Types of Retainers Explained

A man removing a clear retainer Once you have undergone orthodontic treatment, finding the right fit for dental retainers is necessary to maintain the results. It can also prevent teeth from shifting back to their original positions. 

Understanding the different types of retainers available can help you make an informed decision. You can decide which option is best for your needs. Let’s delve into the three types of retainers and find the right fit for you.

Why You Need to Find the Right Fit for Retainers

Retainers play a vital role in preserving the alignment of your teeth following orthodontic treatment. Without proper retention, teeth tend to shift to their pretreatment positions over time. 

This shifting can undo the progress made during orthodontic treatment and necessitate further intervention. Therefore, finding the right fit for retainers is important to maintaining the alignment achieved through braces or clear aligners.

The 3 Types of Retainers

  1. Hawley Retainer – Hawley retainers consist of a combination of acrylic material and metal wires. They are custom-made to fit the roof of the mouth or the inside of the lower teeth. Plus, they are adjustable for minor teeth movements. Hawley retainers are durable, easy to clean, and allow for comfortable wear. However, they may be more noticeable compared to other types of retainers.
  2. Clear Retainers (Essix Retainers) – These retainers are made from transparent plastic material that fits snugly over the teeth. They are virtually invisible, making them a popular choice among individuals concerned about aesthetics. Clear retainers are easy to wear and remove, but they may be less durable than Hawley retainers and may need replacement over time.
  3. Permanent Retainers – They are thin wires bonded to the back of the teeth, typically placed behind the front lower teeth. They are discreet and remain in place long-term to prevent teeth from shifting. While bonded retainers provide continuous retention, they require meticulous oral hygiene and regular dental check-ups to prevent plaque buildup and potential complications.

Get Your Dental Retainers in Oregon

Choosing the best type of retainer can help you maintain the results of orthodontic treatment. Whether you opt for a Hawley retainer, clear retainer, or bonded retainer, you must follow your orthodontist’s recommendations for wear and care. 

If you’re unsure which type of retainer is best for you, call us at 503-362-9548 and schedule an appointment with Bryan Johnson Orthodontics.

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