What is Invisalign and How Does It Work?

What is Invisalign and How Does It Work?

The luck of the genetic draw means that sometimes you may have less than straight teeth. Or you might have an overbite, with the top front teeth coming down too far over the lower front teeth. Modern orthodontics and dental advances, however, now mean that you aren’t stuck with what Nature put in your gift bag.

Is It Really Necessary to Have Straight Teeth?

In a word – maybe. Straight teeth are definitely more attractive from an aesthetic viewpoint. People in the media, for example – whose appearance can make a difference in job opportunities – often choose to get their teeth straightened, even as adults. Those whose appearance isn’t as much of an issue may do just fine with slightly crooked teeth. For both adults and children, however, the real issue behind teeth straightening is oral health. Teeth that are jammed together and teeth that are widely spaced can both contribute to tooth decay. Closely spaced teeth are harder to clean and floss, while wide-set teeth may trap food particles in the spaces. When your teeth are crooked they are more likely to wear unevenly. Technically, this condition is known as malocclusion, and it can cause bite problems, jaw pain and headaches. For people with these kinds of oral health issues, teeth straightening moves over to the “it’s probably necessary” side of the equation.

Conventional Treatment Options

The traditional treatment involves metal or ceramic braces that consist of brackets cemented or otherwise attached to the teeth. These brackets are connected with wire, rubber bands or both. They must be adjusted every two to three weeks to gradually move the teeth into the correct position. Since they are not removable, very careful attention to oral hygiene is vital. Food particles can get trapped in the brackets or wires and it can be hard to floss completely. Dietary restrictions are usually recommended to prevent breaking the brackets or wires – foods like popcorn, for example, are usually off the menu until treatment is completed and the brackets can be removed. For children who play sports, the risk of oral injury is a little higher, as even with a mouth guard, wires and brackets can come into contact with the gums. Wires and brackets can also rub on tissues of the cheeks and cause sore spots. For children who participate in band or play a musical instrument, conventional treatment can cause some problems using wind instruments like flutes or trombones. Traditional treatment is often less expensive, however.

A New Approach

The Invisalign system is a completely new concept in straightening teeth. The system consists of a series of plastic aligners that fit over the teeth. Each aligner moves the teeth just a little. The aligners are custom-made from a 3D computer-generated pattern based on molds of the patient’s teeth. The aligner is nearly invisible, as it is made from clear plastic. What patients often appreciate the most, however, is that the aligner is removable. Oral hygiene becomes much easier. If there’s something special on the agenda like a big date or senior pictures, the aligner can be temporarily removed. No dietary restrictions re required, as the aligner can be taken out for meals.

How Does It Work?

The first step in the treatment process is a visit with an orthodontist, who will assess your child’s mouth and make treatment recommendations. After he or she develops a treatment plan, molds of the teeth are used to enter digital pictures into the 3D computer software which is used to develop the aligners. Every two or three weeks, you or your child will put it a new aligner. In most cases, you only need to see the orthodontist every six weeks or so (much less frequently than with conventional treatment). After approximately 12 to 18 months, the teeth will have become straight. Many patients need to wear a retainer for another year or so to ensure the teeth will stabilize in the new position. This retainer is similar to the treatment aligner in that it is removable and made of clear plastic. Both aligner and retainer must be cleaned at least once a day, but this is easy since they can simply be soaked in the special cleaning solution or in vinegar for five minutes, then thoroughly rinsed with plain water.

Straight teeth – whether for cosmetic or oral health reasons – are possible for nearly anyone, no matter what their age. Please contact us at Papandreas Orthodontics if you have questions or need more information. We will also be happy to schedule you or your child for an appointment to assess your oral health and can discuss payment options or any other concerns you may have.

Call Papandreas Orthodontics to Schedule Your First Orthodontic Appointment

Dr. Samuel Papandreas provides expert orthodontic care for adults, teenagers and children at his facilities in:

• Brunswick, Ohio
• North Royalton, Ohio

His patients are fitted with customized orthodontic devices that include:

• Braces – color-matching ceramic or metal devices
• Retainers – worn at night when your braces are removed
• Invisalign aligners – clear plastic devices
• Palatal expanders – worn before your orthodontic treatment begins

You can schedule an appointment with Papandreas Orthodontics to learn about the best type of orthodontic treatment for you and your children to improve your smile correct your dental bite.

Papandreas Orthodontics
3511 Center Road, Suite B
Brunswick, OH 44212
tel: 330-558-9092

***

14200 Ridge Rd
North Royalton, OH 44133
tel: 440-582-8585

How Do I Clean My Invisalign?

invisalignHow Do I Clean My Invisalign?

Proper oral hygiene is essential for enjoying your smile after your orthodontic treatment. Your new Invisalign trays offer an advantage over other teeth alignment methods because you can take them out of your mouth prior to brushing your teeth so that it is easier to remove food particles that lead to cavities. However, you will need to add a few extra steps to your oral hygiene routine to ensure that your plastic aligners stay in top condition. Use these strategies to make cleaning your new orthodontic appliances simple and effective.

Know the Dangers of Skipping a Cleaning

Unlike traditional braces, your plastic aligners give you the freedom to eat and drink whatever you want. However, there is usually some food residue that remains in your mouth after you put your aligners back inside. Your saliva and oral tissues are also a breeding ground for bacteria. Failing to properly clean your alignment trays can cause the bacteria to build up and cause a foul odor. Food particles can also work their way into the trays. Since your aligners are designed to work by applying pressures as they fit against your teeth, an errant crumb can cause an incorrect fit that delays your progress.

Avoid Exposure to Food

Your orthodontist will talk to you about the importance of consistently wearing your aligners as prescribed in your treatment plan. Yet, there are times when you will need to remove them such as any time you eat. Taking your alignment traces out of your mouth when you eat helps reduce the amount of food particles that get stuck on them. It also eliminates the possibility of them becoming stained from foods such as blueberries or artificial dye. Eating hard or sticky foods could also damage the plastic of your aligners and lead to a need for an emergency orthodontic appointment. Most importantly, removing your aligners will make it easier to get them completely clean during your oral hygiene routine.

Rinse After Removal

The easiest step to keeping your aligners clean is to simply rinse them with water every time they are removed for eating. This reduces the amount of bacteria on your plastic trays, and it removes plaque and saliva. When you are away from home and unable to properly clean your aligners, this also ensures that you do not introduce more bacteria to your mouth when they are reinserted.

Brush To Remove Debris

You can brush your plastic aligners in the same manner that you brush your teeth. However, it is important to avoid using most types of toothpaste because they are abrasive and can create tiny cracks. Certain toothpastes can also cause discoloration. If you are unsure of whether or not your toothpaste is safe to use, bring it to your appointment so that your orthodontist can check the ingredients. To brush your aligners, start with a soft-bristled toothbrush, and gently use it to scrub in circular motions around the surfaces of your aligners. Pay special attention to the areas where the aligners come in contact with your teeth since this is a common area where plaque tends to build up.

Soak the Aligners

Soaking your aligners at least once a day helps to dissolve major build up and bacteria that brushing and rinsing alone cannot remove. There are several methods that you can use for soaking your aligners, and it is always best to choose the one that best fits your budget and schedule so that it will be easy to stay consistent. The Invisalign brand creates a cleaning kit that is ideal for those who want to know they are definitely using the recommended product by the company. However, the cleaning crystals can be expensive for many patients who are on a budget. A vinegar and water solution is one option that you can try, but it is important to only soak the trays for less than five minutes. Soaking them any longer will allow the acids in the vinegar to erode the plastic trays.

Rinse and Dry the Aligners

After every cleaning method, it is important to give your aligners a final rinse with warm water. This helps remove any lingering debris while ensuring that the cleaners are rinsed off. It is important to avoid placing wet aligners in your mouth, so give them time to air dry. Place them on a soft, lint-free towel while they dry, and make sure they are stored in a safe location that is away from heated appliances during the drying time.

Avoid Harmful Cleaning Methods

There are several types of cleaning methods that you may hear people swear by, but orthodontists know that they can cause harm. For example, mouthwash should not be used as a soaking solution because it can cause discoloration. However, it is perfectly safe to rinse with mouthwash after brushing your teeth. Bleach should never used to brighten up your trays since it breaks down the plastic and causes it to turn a yellowish color. Instead, talk to your orthodontic team if you feel your trays are unsightly or have a foul odor so that they can review how to keep them clean before you get your next set of aligners.

Call Papandreas Orthodontics to Schedule Your First Orthodontic Appointment

Dr. Samuel Papandreas provides expert orthodontic care for adults, teenagers and children at his facilities in:

• Brunswick, Ohio
• North Royalton, Ohio

His patients are fitted with customized orthodontic devices that include:

• Braces – color-matching ceramic or metal devices
• Retainers – worn at night when your braces are removed
• Invisalign aligners – clear plastic devices
• Palatal expanders – worn before your orthodontic treatment begins

You can schedule an appointment with Papandreas Orthodontics to learn about the best type of orthodontic treatment for you and your children to improve your smile correct your dental bite.

Papandreas Orthodontics
3511 Center Road, Suite B
Brunswick, OH 44212
tel: 330-558-9092

***

14200 Ridge Rd
North Royalton, OH 44133
tel: 440-582-8585
https://drpapandreas.com/

How Do I Clean my Invisalign?

Orthodontic Fact #6 – The First Braces Were a Piece of Flat Metal in 1720; It was Connected to the Patient’s Teeth Using Several Pieces of Thread

braces

Orthodontic Fact #6 – The First Braces Were a Piece of Flat Metal in 1720; It was Connected to the Patient’s Teeth Using Several Pieces of Thread

Teeth that are crooked or improperly spaced have always been a source of trouble for humans. In addition to affecting a person’s facial appearance, such deformities can lead to related dental and even to general health problems. The desire to have straight teeth dates back to ancient times, but it would take the then-new field orthodontics to successfully tackle the issue. The goal was finally reached through the development of dental braces.

The Birth of Orthodontics

The first practical tooth-straightening device was developed in the 1720s. Essentially a flat piece of metal, the brace was connected to the teeth with thread. Later devices consisted of bands cut from rubber tubing that, while primitive, worked in a way similar to modern braces. The braces themselves were made of different materials, including copper, gold and even wood. Greater advancements in the field have come about in the past 50 years, including the development of a dental adhesive designed to keep the braces attached to the teeth. Braces made of stainless steel would also come into use during this period of time. Dental braces are widely used today by adolescents who have all of their permanent teeth and by adults who also desire teeth that are straight and attractive. Three principal types of braces are available today:

The Invisalign System

The most recent development in the field of orthodontics comes in the form of invisible aligners. Known as Invisalign, these clear plastic devices are fitted to the teeth and then changed periodically. Each aligner is slightly different, which allows the Invisalign system to gently move the teeth into the desired position.

Call Papandreas Orthodontics to Schedule Your First Orthodontic Appointment

Dr. Samuel Papandreas provides expert orthodontic care for adults, teenagers and children at his facilities in:

• Brunswick, Ohio
• North Royalton, Ohio

His patients are fitted with customized orthodontic devices that include:

• Braces – color-matching ceramic or metal devices
• Retainers – worn at night when your braces are removed
• Invisalign aligners – clear plastic devices
• Palatal expanders – worn before your orthodontic treatment begins

You can schedule an appointment with Papandreas Orthodontics to learn about the best type of orthodontic treatment for you and your children to improve your smile correct your dental bite.

Papandreas Orthodontics
3511 Center Road, Suite B
Brunswick, OH 44212
tel: 330-558-9092

***

14200 Ridge Rd
North Royalton, OH 44133
tel: 440-582-8585
https://drpapandreas.com/

Orthodontic Fact #6 – The First Braces Were a Piece of Flat Metal in 1720; It was Connected to the Patient’s Teeth Using Several Pieces of Thread

Orthodontic Fact #5 Improve your dental health in style. Many teens today fashion their dental braces with colored bands and brackets. Braces are now worn as a fashion statement

orthodontics

Orthodontic Fact #5 Improve your dental health in style. Many teens today fashion their dental braces with colored bands and brackets. Braces are now worn as a fashion statement

There is something innate about self-expression, which is especially important for a young person. The need to express yourself is one of the oldest human traits as it helps people get to know who you are, among other things. Expression comes in many forms like using choosing braces colors.

How Does Color Connect to Self-Expression?

Colors are universally understood. A red heart might signify love, but a black heart usually has a darker meaning. The color does the talking. Young people connect to color in different ways like the following:

Being in a Click

There are a number of groups out there, especially young groups. Consider those who are interested in rock or metal. This subculture is usually associated with dark colors like black, gray, and silver. It would not be surprising if someone in this subculture used dark colors for his or her braces. Of course, there are more localized clicks like young people who are invested in a particular sports team. It will not be surprising to see the team’s colors reflected in the braces.

Personal Expression

Another way that young people might express themselves is by sticking to colors that represent who they are. Take blue, for example, which is known for serenity and peace. People who gravitate to peace will likely choose a blue-like pattern for their brackets or band. Green could also give off peace as it is commonly found in nature.

Call Papandreas Orthodontics to Schedule Your First Orthodontic Appointment

Dr. Samuel Papandreas provides expert orthodontic care for adults, teenagers and children at his facilities in:

• Brunswick, Ohio
• North Royalton, Ohio

His patients are fitted with customized orthodontic devices that include:

• Braces – color-matching ceramic or metal devices
• Retainers – worn at night when your braces are removed
• Invisalign aligners – clear plastic devices
• Palatal expanders – worn before your orthodontic treatment begins

You can schedule an appointment with Papandreas Orthodontics to learn about the best type of orthodontic treatment for you and your children to improve your smile correct your dental bite.

Papandreas Orthodontics
3511 Center Road, Suite B
Brunswick, OH 44212
tel: 330-558-9092

***

14200 Ridge Rd
North Royalton, OH 44133
tel: 440-582-8585
https://drpapandreas.com/

Orthodontic Fact #5 Improve your dental health in style. Many teens today fashion their dental braces with colored bands and brackets. Braces are now worn as a fashion statement

Orthodontic Fact #4 Contrary to popular belief, you do not have to lose all your teeth before you get braces. In fact, treatments can start at the young age of 7

orthodontics

Orthodontic Fact #4 Contrary to popular belief, you do not have to lose all your teeth before you get braces. In fact, treatments can start at the young age of 7

Though it’s true that an orthodontist usually waits until a person’s permanent teeth have grown in before they fit them with braces, there are exceptions. Some children are fitted with what are called Phase I braces, or partial braces while they still have their baby teeth.

Phase I

Phase I orthodontics are applied if the child has a severe problem that must be attended to before their permanent teeth come in, such as a crossbite. Waiting to fix the problem until the permanent teeth erupt can lead to trauma such surgery on the jaw or the removal of some permanent teeth.

Phase I expands the child’s upper jaw, begins the straightening of the teeth and makes sure that the upper and lower jaws come into the proper relationship to each other. Phase I usually lasts between nine and 18 months. It is replaced with retainers worn for four to six months or until the child’s permanent teeth come in. This is usually between 11 and 12 for girls and 12 and 13 for boys.

Phase II

When the permanent teeth erupt, the child can then be fitted for Phase II orthodontics, which are usually worn between 12 and 18 months to continue the alignment of the teeth. Older children can be fitted with Invisalign trays. These are clear trays that are custom made to help straighten the child’s teeth, but they can only be prescribed by an orthodontist if all the teeth save the wisdom teeth have erupted. Therefore, the earliest age a person can wear Invisalign is between 10 and 14. The trays are kept in for 23 hours a day and are removable by the patient to allow them to eat what they want and perform their usual oral hygiene.

Call Papandreas Orthodontics to Schedule Your First Orthodontic Appointment

Dr. Samuel Papandreas provides expert orthodontic care for adults, teenagers and children at his facilities in:

• Brunswick, Ohio
• North Royalton, Ohio

His patients are fitted with customized orthodontic devices that include:

• Braces – color-matching ceramic or metal devices
• Retainers – worn at night when your braces are removed
• Invisalign aligners – clear plastic devices
• Palatal expanders – worn before your orthodontic treatment begins

You can schedule an appointment with Papandreas Orthodontics to learn about the best type of orthodontic treatment for you and your children to improve your smile correct your dental bite.

Papandreas Orthodontics
3511 Center Road, Suite B
Brunswick, OH 44212
tel: 330-558-9092

***

14200 Ridge Rd
North Royalton, OH 44133
tel: 440-582-8585
https://drpapandreas.com/

Orthodontic Fact #4 Contrary to popular belief, you do not have to lose all your teeth before you get braces. In fact, treatments can start at the young age of 7

Orthodontic Fact #3 Here’s a fun fact: All orthodontists are dentists, but only 5 percent of dentists are orthodontists. Confusing, isn’t it?

orthodontists

Orthodontic Fact #3 Here’s a fun fact: All orthodontists are dentists, but only 5 percent of dentists are orthodontists. Confusing, isn’t it?

This fun fact about how few orthodontists there are compared to dentist is really pretty simple. It may be easier to understand when you realize all medical doctor specialists, such as an ear, nose and throat doctor are doctors first, then specialize in their field of interest.

What An Orthodontist Does

Orthodontists are concerned about the way teeth grow and use braces to correct bite problems and misaligned teeth.  Orthodontists receive years of additional formal education that help them learn about the causes of, and treat, the misalignment of teeth caused by any reason.  Orthodontists conduct individualized and personal treatment for patients of all ages who require the straightening of teeth.

Type of Braces

Traditional metal correction consist of metal and wires for strength and the ability for regular adjustments for tightening or loosening. They are usually needed for the most severe misalignments and also provide a faster result, generally, than other types of orthodontic treatment.

Ceramic and clear plastic corrective appliances that are similar to the metal ones are great for a less conspicuous look. Some teens and older adults prefer this type over metal, when indicated.

Lingual are worn on the inside of teeth and can be made of metal or ceramic, but they, too, are undetectable from the outside.

Invisalign is a patented clear appliance that slips over the teeth and are virtually undetectable. This is a great choice for less severe problems or to maintain straight teeth. They are easily removed for cleaning and eating with less hassle. Invisalign is often a great option for adult patients who do not require a significant change.

Call Papandreas Orthodontics to Schedule Your First Orthodontic Appointment

Dr. Samuel Papandreas provides expert orthodontic care for adults, teenagers and children at his facilities in:

• Brunswick, Ohio
• North Royalton, Ohio

His patients are fitted with customized orthodontic devices that include:

• Braces – color-matching ceramic or metal devices
• Retainers – worn at night when your braces are removed
• Invisalign aligners – clear plastic devices
• Palatal expanders – worn before your orthodontic treatment begins

You can schedule an appointment with Papandreas Orthodontics to learn about the best type of orthodontic treatment for you and your children to improve your smile correct your dental bite.

Papandreas Orthodontics
3511 Center Road, Suite B
Brunswick, OH 44212
tel: 330-558-9092

***

14200 Ridge Rd
North Royalton, OH 44133
tel: 440-582-8585
https://drpapandreas.com/

Orthodontic Fact #3 Here’s a fun fact: All orthodontists are dentists, but only 5 percent of dentists are orthodontists. Confusing, isn’t it?

Orthodontic Fact #2 A brace is one type of dental appliance

Pap-Fact2-2016The Different Types and Uses of Dental Braces

Few of us are born with perfect teeth. Even teeth that are generally healthy may not grow properly, leading to unsightly gaps or insufficient spacing. A dental brace is the common answer to these types of problems. It is the orthodontist who is trained to determine who needs such appliances and how they should be used.

Straightening Your Teeth

Dental braces have been around for a long time, serving the purpose of straightening teeth. They are today commonly worn by both children and adults. These devices are useful in treating a number of dental anomalies, including:

  • Overbites and underbites
  • Improper spacing of the teeth
  • Jaw irregularities

The Different Types of Dental Appliances

Traditional metal braces are popular because of their efficiency and affordability. They can also be adopted to the specific needs of each patient. Ceramic appliances are popular because they are less visible from the outside compared to metal devices. They can also be made to perfectly match a person’s teeth and even come with clear or color-matching wires to disguise their presence. Your orthodontist can help you decide which devices are best for your situation.

Invisalign Aligners

Those with less serious cases of tooth malocclusion may be able to take advantage of Invisalign aligners. Suitable for both adults and adolescents, these clear devices can be easily removed for eating or brushing. Most patients will require from 20 to 25 sets of Invisalign aligners to achieve the desired results, with each set being worn for about two weeks before it is replaced with one that is slightly different.

Call Papandreas Orthodontics to Schedule Your First Orthodontic Appointment

Dr. Samuel Papandreas provides expert orthodontic care for adults, teenagers and children at his facilities in:

• Brunswick, Ohio
• North Royalton, Ohio

His patients are fitted with customized orthodontic devices that include:

• Braces – color-matching ceramic or metal devices
• Retainers – worn at night when your braces are removed
• Invisalign aligners – clear plastic devices
• Palatal expanders – worn before your orthodontic treatment begins

You can schedule an appointment with Papandreas Orthodontics to learn about the best type of orthodontic treatment for you and your children to improve your smile correct your dental bite.

Papandreas Orthodontics
3511 Center Road, Suite B
Brunswick, OH 44212
tel: 330-558-9092

***

14200 Ridge Rd
North Royalton, OH 44133
tel: 440-582-8585
https://drpapandreas.com/

Orthodontic Fact #2 A brace is one type of dental appliance

How to Take Care of Your Retainers

retainersHow to Take Care of Your Retainers

Getting your braces off is a moment to celebrate! After all, you can now see the results of all your hard work every time you flash that beautiful smile. While this is an exciting time, it is important to remember that your treatment plan involves using a retainer to keep your teeth in proper alignment.

For most people, the retainment period lasts for about a year, but it could be longer or shorter depending upon your needs. At first, you will probably have to wear your retainer for most of the day and night, but you may be able to wean down to only wearing it at night as you progress through your treatment. Since your retainers are critical for keeping your teeth aligned, you will want to take special care of them throughout this time.

Know When to Remove Your Retainer

While your orthodontist will tell you to wear your retainer for the majority of the day, there are times when it will be necessary to remove it from your mouth. Typically, you will need to remove your retainer when you eat, yet you can drink without having to remove it. If you play sports, then it is also essential to remove your retainer before practice or competitions since it could cause injuries to your mouth if it is hit. Your retainer should not be worn during swimming, either. You can, however, wear your retainer during mild forms of exercise that do not pose a risk of objects coming in contact with your mouth such as jogging.

Store The Retainer Properly

Almost everyone has heard the horror story of parents who end up searching through the elementary school trash bin because their kid threw their retainer away. Unfortunately, this does happen all too often due to kids wrapping their retainer in a napkin during lunch. We understand that leaving your retainer on full display may be embarrassing, so just bring your storage container with you anytime you know that it will need to be removed. Keeping your retainer in your storage container not only keeps it safe, but it also keeps it clean so that you will not put as many germs into your mouth.

Avoid Heat Sources

Retainers are fairly durable, but they are made of plastic that is sensitive to the effects of heat. Make sure to avoid placing your retainer in the dishwasher, and use lukewarm water when you are cleaning it. A retainer should also never be left in a hot car, especially on the dashboard where the heat levels tend to be the highest. For the most part, wearing your retainer as outlined by your treatment plan will ensure that it does not come into contact with many heat sources, but you need to be careful if you leave it on the bathroom counter along with heat styling appliances. Sitting too close to curling irons and straighteners has ruined many retainers.

Clean It Properly

Sure, a dishwasher may seem like a hygienic way to sanitize your retainer, but the hot water and strong water movement can damage it beyond repair. Cleaning your retainer properly should become a part of your normal oral hygiene routine, and the extra step will ensure that bacteria and food debris do not stay in contact with your teeth when you place your retainer in your mouth. To clean it, simply use your toothbrush along with some toothpaste and warm water to brush it like you would your teeth. Remember to use gentle strokes, and take your time if you see obvious debris. Your retainer should be cleaned at least once a day, but it may need to be cleaned more if you notice that it tastes odd or looks dirty.

Don’t Let It Dry Out

Similar to the effect of heat, drying out can warp the plastic used to make your retainer. When your retainer is not in your mouth, keep it wet by storing it in your container. If you are wearing your retainer and notice that your mouth gets dry, then simply drink some water to rehydrate it.

Be Careful During Insertion and Removal

It is important to use a gentle touch when you insert or remove your retainer. This is because using too heavy of a touch can result in broken wires. Many kids think it is cool to use their tongue to flip the retainer in place, however this is one of the most common causes of damage to retainers so please use the technique your orthodontist has showed you in their office.

Schedule an Exam at the First Sign of Damage

Sometimes, kids will delay telling their parents about a broken retainer because they are afraid of getting in trouble. However, doing so can have serious consequences for your teeth. A broken or ill-fitting retainer will not hold the teeth in the correct alignment, and all that hard work done by the braces will go to waste. Broken wires on a retainer can also lead to mouth injuries. For this reason, it is important to schedule an appointment quickly if damage is suspected. Your orthodontist may be able to simply repair the retainer in the office so that no delay in your treatment occurs.

Call Papandreas Orthodontics to Schedule Your First Orthodontic Appointment

Dr. Samuel Papandreas provides expert orthodontic care for adults, teenagers and children at his facilities in:

• Brunswick, Ohio
• North Royalton, Ohio

His patients are fitted with customized orthodontic devices that include:

• Braces – color-matching ceramic or metal devices
• Retainers – worn at night when your braces are removed
• Invisalign aligners – clear plastic devices
• Palatal expanders – worn before your orthodontic treatment begins

You can schedule an appointment with Papandreas Orthodontics to learn about the best type of orthodontic treatment for you and your children to improve your smile correct your dental bite.

Papandreas Orthodontics
3511 Center Road, Suite B
Brunswick, OH 44212
tel: 330-558-9092

***

14200 Ridge Rd
North Royalton, OH 44133
tel: 440-582-8585
https://drpapandreas.com/

How to Take Care of Your Retainers

Orthodontic Fact #1 Almost 25% of patients that wore braces had to get them again after treatment because they failed to wear retainers as they were advised

braces again

Orthodontic Fact #1 Almost 25% of patients that wore braces had to get them again after treatment because they failed to wear retainers as they were advised

Unfortunately, patients sometimes return to their orthodontist after treatment due to teeth that have fallen back out of alignment. When this happens, the problem can usually be traced to a person failing to wear their retainers according to their treatment plan. To help you avoid becoming part of this statistic, here is what you need to know about the importance of wearing your retainer after your Invisalign treatment.

The Anatomy of Your New Smile

Although many people think teeth are firmly set in the jaw bone, the connection is much more delicate. Ligaments and tendons run from your tooth root to the bone, and their flexibility allows teeth to move slightly in response to normal mouth movements. Over time, your teeth will try to shift back into their former position once your braces are removed. However, your retainer will provide gentle tension on these ligaments that keep your teeth firmly in place.

Average Length of the Retainment Phase

When your teeth begin to shift after Invisalign treatment, it is known as relapse. If this happens, your orthodontist will likely recommend another round of braces to get them back in place. Sadly, this will increase the amount of time it takes to achieve your desired smile. Fortunately, retainers are great for avoiding this problem, and the amount of time you have to wear them will gradually decrease as long as you wear them properly. At first, you may need to wear them all day, except when you are eating. Later, you will likely be able to wean down to only a few days a week or just overnight.

Call Papandreas Orthodontics to Schedule Your First Orthodontic Appointment

Dr. Samuel Papandreas provides expert orthodontic care for adults, teenagers and children at his facilities in:

• Brunswick, Ohio
• North Royalton, Ohio

His patients are fitted with customized orthodontic devices that include:

• Braces – color-matching ceramic or metal devices
• Retainers – worn at night when your braces are removed
• Invisalign aligners – clear plastic devices
• Palatal expanders – worn before your orthodontic treatment begins

You can schedule an appointment with Papandreas Orthodontics to learn about the best type of orthodontic treatment for you and your children to improve your smile correct your dental bite.

Papandreas Orthodontics
3511 Center Road, Suite B
Brunswick, OH 44212
tel: 330-558-9092

***

14200 Ridge Rd
North Royalton, OH 44133
tel: 440-582-8585
https://drpapandreas.com/

Orthodontic Fact #1 Almost 25% of patients that wore braces had to get them again after treatment because they failed to wear retainers as they were advised

The Importance of Wearing Retainers After Treatment

retainers
Getting your braces off is an exciting day for everyone who goes through the treatment. After months or years of having braces, they will finally be removed to reveal the straight smile you’ve been dreaming of. But treatment doesn’t end after the braces are off. While you may have the permanent fixtures removed from your mouth, you will probably still need to wear retainers to maintain your new straight smile that you’ve invested so much time – and money – into.

Why Do I Need a Retainer?

When you first get your braces off, your teeth may not be used to their new positioning. While they have spent so many years in their original place, they may be tempted to migrate back to where they started. Because you don’t want to keep your braces on until they are used to their new location, retainers act as a removable support system for keeping your smile straight.

The first month after you get your braces off will have the highest risk of what is known as “relapse.” Relapse refers to the movement of your teeth back into their original pre-braces position. Most people will need to wear their retainer at all times during this first month, although it can be removed for eating and cleaning.

After the first month, your teeth should be more used to their new homes and less likely to try and move back. Even so, there is still a strong chance of relapse during your first year.

How Often Do I Need to Wear My Retainer?

The amount that you will need to wear your retainer will depend on the retainer kind and the state of your teeth before your braces. If your teeth did not need to move much, then you may spend less time with your retainer.

For the most part, all individuals will need to wear their retainer full time for at least one month. In most circumstances, six months of full time wear is recommended. Then possible for a couple years after that, the retainer will only need to be worn at night.

If you got braces as an adult, you may be required to wear your retainer more often. Because aging can change the shape of your mouth and face, your teeth may be tempted to move as well. A permanent retainer may be recommended, or you may need to wear your retainer at night for years to come.

The amount that you will need to wear your retainer will be determined by your orthodontist. Through a plan that he or she creates for you, you can ensure that your teeth stay in their new, straight position.

What Does My Retainer Look Like?

Your retainer will be custom made to fit your teeth perfectly after your braces come off. While you may feel a bit of tightness while wearing your retainer, this is just to ensure that your teeth do not have space to move. The kind of retainer that you have will depend on your needs, the likelihood that your teeth will try to move, and your age.

If your teeth have a high chance of moving, your orthodontist may recommend using a permanent retainer. Rather than a removable item, a permanent retainer is a piece of metal that is fused to the back of your teeth. Some individuals will need to have this permanent retainer for the rest of their lives. Others may have it removed after a few years.


The most common kind of retainer will be made of acrylic and metal. The metal is specially fit to go around the teeth while the acrylic piece rests on the top of your mouth. Another kind of retainer is made of clear plastic and resembles an Invisalign tray. These retainers may be used more often if you need to wear the piece full time, but they are usually more expensive than the standard metal and acrylic retainers.

Why is My Retainer Important?

A retainer keeps all the hard work of you, your orthodontist, and your braces in place. While you may believe that your straight smile is here to stay, in a few years you may be back to where you started if you don’t take care of your teeth.

It is natural for our teeth to want to return to their starting position after the braces come off. If you should ignore your smile and fail to use your retainer properly, you may find that your smile is the same as it was before your braces went on – making you feel as if you’ve wasted your time and money going through the treatment of having braces.

It is important that you follow the instructions on wearing and maintaining your retainer as given to you by your orthodontist. By following your orthodontist’s instructions, you can ensure that the smile you’ve worked so hard to get is here to stay.

Call Papandreas Orthodontics to Schedule Your First Orthodontic Appointment

Dr. Samuel Papandreas provides expert orthodontic care for adults, teenagers and children at his facilities in:

• Brunswick, Ohio
• North Royalton, Ohio

His patients are fitted with customized orthodontic devices that include:

• Braces – color-matching ceramic or metal devices
• Retainers – worn at night when your braces are removed
• Invisalign aligners – clear plastic devices
• Palatal expanders – worn before your orthodontic treatment begins

You can schedule an appointment with Papandreas Orthodontics to learn about the best type of orthodontic treatment for you and your children to improve your smile correct your dental bite.

Papandreas Orthodontics
3511 Center Road, Suite B
Brunswick, OH 44212
tel: 330-558-9092

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14200 Ridge Rd
North Royalton, OH 44133
tel: 440-582-8585
https://drpapandreas.com/

The Importance of Wearing Retainers After Treatment