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Congratulations! After multiple adjustment sessions with your William B. Hentosz, DDS, INC orthodontist, your teeth have been aligned into their ideal smile. It’s important to remember that even after your braces have been removed your teeth will still need a little bit of help maintaining their new position.

There will still be a small amount of residual tension in the periodontal ligaments that secure your teeth in their sockets. If this tension isn’t addressed, it will gradually pull your teeth out of alignment again.

To prevent this from happening, your orthodontist will prescribe one of three different types of retainer.

A Hawley-style retainer is the most common type of retainer we recommend. It is essentially a thin, tongue-shaped piece of acrylic, custom fit to the shape of your mouth. The retainer is secured in your mouth by a set of wires that lock into specific teeth.

A clear plastic retainer might be called for if you only needed braces for a short period of time. The clear plastic material making it hard for the casual observer to notice you’re even wearing a retainer.

If your braces were needed to provide a significant amount of realignment, your orthodontist might recommend installing a fixed retainer. This is even more likely if your front teeth were severely out of alignment. It’s basically a durable wire retainer cemented in place behind your teeth.

If you are due to have braces removed soon and you have questions about what type of retainer you’ll need, you can call William B. Hentosz, DDS, INC’s office in Alhambra, California at 626-458-8898 to ask a question.