Smiles for Kids Dentistry & Orthodontics offers orthodontic treatments to children and teenagers. One of our most popular orthodontic devices is braces, which can correct a number of dentition issues by moving teeth into straight alignment. Once in position, we’ll use a retainer to keep the teeth in place and promote healing and permanent results.
Braces apply pressure to teeth to push them into the correct position and alignment. A retainer keeps teeth in place until more permanent tissue growth can occur. Once a patient’s gums and jaw have adjusted to the placement of the teeth, a retainer is no longer necessary. In general, a patient will wear a retainer for an equal amount of time as he or she wore braces.
Retainers are custom-made to fit an individual child’s mouth. They are generally molded from plastic or plastic and wire, and no two retainers will be exactly the same. Retainers can be removable or fixed.
The most common type of removable retainer is called a Hawley retainer. This utilizes wires and clasps embedded in a thick piece of plastic that covers the roof of the mouth or alongside the tongue for the bottom jaw. Another option is a clear retainer, which is a type of vacuum-formed plastic appliance that somewhat resembles a mouth guard.
Fixed retainers, also called bonded or permanent retainers, are bonded directly to the rear surface of front teeth. Despite the name, permanent retainers are not generally worn for life. However, they can only be removed by a professional.
Contact Smiles for Kids today to learn more about our available orthodontics treatments, including braces and retainers. We will help you to understand the options available for your child and choose the right treatment for lifelong results.