Role Of Retainers In Orthodontics

Orthodontics Retainers

It’s the big day and your braces are finally coming off! Does that mean you are fully done? Not so fast! After you complete your treatment, your orthodontist will suggest you wear a retainer, which must be worn regularly after treatment so as to grip your teeth in their suitable, new position till the time your gums, ligaments and bones acclimatize. The majority patients are obligatory to wear their retainer every night at first, with many also being intended for to wear them throughout the day.

Orthodontic Retainers

Why are Retainers Important?

Wearing retainers is one of the most essential part of your orthodontic treatment.  When the braces are removed, the teeth have a propensity  to go back to their original positions. To avert this from happening and to allocate the teeth to get used to to their new positions, retainers  must be worn devotedly.

What is an Orthodontic Retainer?

A retainer is a custom-made appliance that holds on teeth from moving back to their pre-treatment positions. Most retainers are not fixed, but in some conditions, your orthodontist may suggest a fixed retainer as part of your treatment.

Types of Retainers

Removable Retainers

Removable Retainers

There are two major types of removable retainers. The Hawley retainer is an acrylic arch molded to the palate with wire attached to hold the teeth in place. The second variety is a clear plastic retainer, similar to a night guard, that is molded to the shape of your child’s teeth – in their new position.

Clear overlay retainers are tiny and simple to wear. They also guard the surfaces of your teeth if you have a grinding or clenching habit.

When the retainers are detached in the morning, brush them watchfully with your toothbrush and toothpaste.

Fixed Retainers

A fixed retainer is basically a thin wire bonded to the inside of upper or lowers front teeth. Fixed retainers are normally used in cases where teeth are vulnerable to moving back rapidly or dramatically and need to be held in place around the clock.

Fixed Retainers

bonded retainer is a small wire bonded (glued) to the tongue side of your lower front six teeth.

For how long do I need to wear retainers?

It takes time for the bone and all the tissues around your teeth to reorganise and therefore it is necessary to use retainers until your bite stabilizes. In the first month subsequent to the braces are removed, the chance of relapse is extremely  high.

Relapse means that the teeth can take up to one year or more to stabilize after treatment. If you had space between your teeth before treatment, the retention period will be longer.

What Will My Retainers Look Like?

The retainers are individually designed to stop teeth from reverting to their original positions. Retainers can take the form of a removable appliance or a fixed wire bonded at the backside of your front teeth.

Do I have to Wear Them All the Time?

Your orthodontist will advise the retention plan that is best for you. Some retainers are used full-time for the first 6 months; after that, the retainers are worn only at night, for a few years. Other retainers are worn full-time for about a week, and solely at night thereafter. Fixed retainers are normally kept in place for 5 years.

Will my teeth never change when the period of retention is over?

Bone has the capability to alter and remodel for as long as we live; that is why a broken down bone can heal.

From 20 to 50 years of age, faces grow-up and teeth keep on to push forward, causing crowding of the lower front teeth. To evade the risk of delayed crowding, removable retainers can be worn at night for a longer phase and fixed retainers kept in for more than 5 years.

Adult patients generally sleep with their retainers on for the rest of their lives, if they desire their teeth in ideal alignment.

Retainer Follow-Up

Ensure to plan and keep follow-up appointments with your dentist and orthodontist. The orthodontist will require seeing your child repeatedly to ensure that his or her teeth are residing where they are supposed to be. Regular cleanings at the dentist’s office are also needed. Food and bacteria can get trapped in the retainer.

Retainers: Keeping Teeth Straight Long-Term

As with the majority interventions in the healthcare field, maintenance is the key. If your child can make wearing their retainer a healthy habit, then you can ensure that those gorgeous teeth stay right where they need to be!

Tooth Attrition/Tooth Wear

Tooth attrition

Tooth Attrition is a kind of tooth wear due to grinding between the opposing teeth. It results in loss of tooth structure especially on the occlusal surfaces. Tooth wear is believed as the widespread feature of ageing process. Pathological tooth wear happens due to some dental or skeletal defect at a very little age.


dental attrition


Too much tooth wear results a lot of oral health complications, together with unappealing and uneven tooth levels, pointy and sharp tooth edges, tooth pain and eventual damage of the teeth all in all. As the harder, external surface of the tooth is worn away, the softer dentin will be bare, speeding up the process.

The Signs and Symptoms of Dental Attrition

  • Loss of tooth structure including a flattening or thinning of the teeth
  • Damage or failure of previous dental restorations.
  • Elevated dental pain because of loss of the enamel layer.
  • Stinging or tender gums.
  • Tooth discoloration as a effect of loss of enamel and revelation of the dentin layer

Symptoms of Tooth Attrition

  • Pain and sensitivity to hot and cold.
  • Loss of occlusal surfaces is observed.
  • Yellow glistening surface come into sight on the tooth surface due to showing layer of dentin.
  • Wear facets are noticed on posterior teeth.
  • Deep bite is common.
  • Altered occlusion due to decreased occlusal vertical dimension.
  • Pain in the temporo mandibular joint because of clenching practice or traumatic bite forces.
  • Effect on the periodontal health.


Tooth Attrition


Causes of Tooth Attrition

  • Grinding habits like bruxism.
  • Deep bite.
  • Decreased over jet or decreased overlap between the teeth.
  • It could be physiologic reduction that is related with ageing process.
  • Tooth wear due to excess acid reflux.
  • If a person incessantly clenches the teeth.
  • Temporomandibular joint issue.

Treatment for Tooth Attrition

  • The habit breaking appliance is used to stop the habit.
  • If patient grits the teeth involuntarily in night its recommended to wear the night guard.
  • The wear facets are refilled back to get the normal tooth structure.
  • If sensitivity is there the patient is advised to use the desensitizing tooth paste.
  • Make use of  fluoride varnish or adhesive agents.
  • Root canal treatment is the other option to treat the sensitivity.
  • Correct the etiology like deep bite or some skeletal incongruity if there by orthodontic treatment
  • Placement of crowns in cases of severe attrition and damage of tooth structure.