Invisalign offers a subtle and convenient way to correct crooked teeth within 6 to 24 months, depending of the severity of the case. What happens when you’re finished with Invisalign treatment? Do you need to wear a retainer for the rest of your life to maintain your results? Let’s learn more about retainers and whether they’re needed after completing Invisalign.
Is a Retainer Necessary After Invisalign Treatment?
Dr. Kathryn Swan, a board-certified orthodontist, recommends that everyone wear a retainer after completing Invisalign treatment. Just like with traditional braces, wearing a retainer after completing Invisalign helps you maintain your beautifully straightened smile. If you don’t wear a retainer after completing treatment, your teeth will slowly shift positions.
Will My Teeth Move If I Don’t Wear a Retainer?
While receiving Invisalign treatment, your jawbone partially softens so that your teeth can move to their more desirable positions. This means that the gum, bone, and surrounding tissues that hold your teeth in place aren’t strong enough to hold your teeth into place while new bone is formed.
Wearing a retainer after completing Invisalign helps support your teeth in their new positions and prevents them from reverting to their original position.
How Often Should I Wear My Retainer After Invisalign?
After completing Invisalign treatment, we recommend wearing your retainer night time for as long as you would like to keep them in their new positions.
Once the new bone has developed and your teeth have fully stabilized into their new positions, usually after a year, it’s still crucial to wear your retainer, but you won’t need to wear it as frequently, usually 3-5 nights a week is sufficient.
Although your teeth won’t dramatically change overnight if you forget to wear your retainer, they will slowly move positions over time. For this reason, we encourage Invisalign patients to wear their retainers as often as Dr. Swan recommends.
What Happens If I Lose My Retainer?
Call our office right away if your retainer is missing or broken. Our friendly team will work with you to schedule an appointment right away to order a replacement retainer so that you don’t lose all of the progress you’ve achieved with Invisalign treatment. When you come in for your appointment, digital impressions of your teeth and mouth are taken. These are used to create your new, custom retainer.
If you have lost or broken your retainer, and have a printed copy of your teeth after treatment, these can be used to make your replacement retainers.
Schedule an Invisalign Appointment Today
Have more questions about Invisalign treatment and retainers? To learn more, please get in touch with the orthodontic professionals at Swan Orthodontics. Dr. Swan and the rest of our team are always happy to answer your questions and help in any way we can. You can reach us by calling 616-698-2323 or filing out our online form. Don’t hesitate to contact us!