Retainers are removable orthodontic devices typically made of plastic and metal, customized to fit to the upper and lower teeth. Although many retainers look alike, no two retainers are identical. Many individuals wear a retainer for a period of time after braces to keep the teeth from shifting or others may wear a retainer to close any spaces that exist between the teeth.
Wearing A Retainer After Braces:
After years or months of braces, wearing a retainer can seem like a reward for many patients! In fact, it can be a relief just knowing that if needed you can remove the retainer for special events, sports or photos.
Generally, after braces are removed, it is expected that the retainer or set of retainers be worn for a specific amount of time and frequency dependent on the dental professionals instruction. For example, some patients may wear a retainer for the first three months following braces during the night and day. Then, after those three months, the retainer may only need to put their retainer in at nighttime. The retainer ensures that the teeth do not shift or move the teeth that the braces worked so diligently to correct.
Wearing a Retainer for Spaces:
Others may have to wear a retainer to maintain alignment and close any gaps that are between the teeth. Retainers may be worn for a longer period of time in order to close the spaces and then keep the gaps closed by holding the teeth in proper place.
Why would my retainer hurt?
No matter if you wear a retainer after braces or for correcting gaps between the teeth because retainers can be removed, it may be difficult to remember to put them back in the mouth sometimes. This may be especially true for individuals that only need to wear their retainer at night. As a result of, after a few days, if the retainer has been left out of the mouth whenever it is put back in the retainer may feel sore, tight or even hurt to some extent. This feeling is usually a result of pressure and this kind of discomfort tends to goes away once the retainer is worn regularly again. If discomfort does not go away after regular wear of the retainer, it is best to contact your dental professional.
If the pain you are feeling doesn’t feel like “tightness” or pressure, it could be that there is a piece of metal or plastic in the retainer irritating the gums or cheeks. This could be from a rough edge or strayed wire. However, a dentist or orthodontist can easily adjust this and make sure the retainer feels as good as new.
Contact Us Today
If you are in prolonged pain from a retainer or feel that you may need an adjustment for your retainer in Richmond, VA, those of us at River Run Dental Spa encourage you to contact us today at 804-442-3873, so that we can best assist you. We understand that discomfort is not ideal for anyone and we would like to get your mouth feeling back to normal as soon as possible!