Will I Have to Wear a Retainer after Invisalign? 

Finally! After a few long months, you are excited to take the Invisalign off and showcase your new smile. That is until your dentist tells you that you have to wear a retainer now. 

Is a retainer really necessary? What could happen if you don't wear yours? 

Keep reading to find out more. 

Why Do I Need a Retainer After Invisalign Treatment? 

Invisalign works by applying consistent, gentle pressure to your teeth, gradually shifting them into the correct position. 

However, this process doesn't stop once your teeth have reached the desired position in your mouth. It takes time for the bones and tissues surrounding your teeth to stabilize in their new position.

Your teeth don't need to shift anymore but need to stay in place. 

That's where a retainer comes in. 

This orthodontic appliance helps to hold your teeth in their new positions while your bone, gums, and muscles adapt to the change. This is a critical step in ensuring that the investment you've made in your smile lasts. 

What Will Happen If I Stop Wearing My Retainer 

We get it that you are tired after 12 or 18 months of wearing your plastic trays and would like to stop. But doing so will jeopardize all the hard work and progress you've made. 

If you were to stop wearing the retainer even for a few days, there's a significant risk that your teeth might relapse, or gradually shift back into their original positions. This happens because the tissue that holds teeth in place has something called elastic memory. And because of this, the teeth tend to move back. 

How Long Will I Need to Wear a Retainer 

That depends on your oral needs. Some people have to wear it full-time for a few months while others can get away with wearing it just at night. 

The general rule is to wear the retainers all day and night (except during meals and oral hygiene) for at least a few months after finishing Invisalign treatment, followed by nighttime wear indefinitely to maintain the results. But, that's for Dr. Leila to decide based on your unique case. 

Do I Need to Wear a Retainer After Traditional Braces Too? 

A lot of our patients think that they can bypass the retainer phase if they switch to traditional metal braces instead of Invisalign. But, the principle is the same. 

Your teeth can still shift even after your orthodontic treatment (whether Invisalign or metal braces) is completed. The retainer helps to keep your teeth in their new, correct positions.

Find Out More From Dr. Leila

We understand that this is not the news that you were hoping for, but wearing a retainer is a non-negotiable part of any orthodontic treatment. Dr. Leila can help you learn more about why and how this device works. 

Book your appointment with Smiles by Dr. Leila today. 

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