A fixed or bonded retainer is an orthodontic appliance that is glued to the back of the teeth. It is typically used on patients who have just gotten their braces removed at our office in Murfreesboro or Shelbyville.
Why Do People Use Fixed Retainers?
The point of getting braces in the first place is to correct the alignment of the patient’s teeth. Unfortunately, once the braces come off, there is a very good chance that the teeth will drift back to their old, crooked positions. A retainer keeps the teeth in their new positions.
How is a Fixed Retainer Applied?
After removing the patient’s braces, an impression is taken of the patient’s teeth. This is then used to make the retainer. The orthodontist thoroughly cleans the patient’s teeth and applies a special glue to the backs of the teeth. The wire is then skillfully inserted. Patients usually wear these retainers for two or three years, but some people have worn it for decades.
Benefits of a Fixed Retainer
The biggest pro of getting a fixed retainer is that it keeps the teeth straight by preventing them from drifting back to their old positions. It also makes patient compliance a non-issue. Since the retainer is permanently glued to the back of the patient’s teeth, the patient can’t lose it or forget to wear it.
A fixed retainer can also be worn with another appliance, like a mouth guard, while a removable retainer cannot. Since the retainer is glued to the back of the teeth, it isn’t visible from the front. The patient will consequently feel less self-conscious when dealing with others or having their picture taken.
Similarly, fixed retainers do not interfere with the patient’s speech or ability to play an instrument or participate in sports. Removable retainers can interfere with a patient’s speech, and they have to be taken out before the patient eats, engages in a sport or plays an instrument.
Like braces and other bonded orthodontic appliances, fixed retainers can make cleaning and flossing the teeth more difficult. However, our team can provide suggestions and recommendations for making this process as simple as possible.
Who is a Good Candidate for a Fixed Retainer?
Patients who practice good dental hygiene are usually good candidates for fixed retainers. During an appointment at Pack Orthodontics, you can learn more about whether or not this type of retainer is right for you. Our orthodontist has locations in Murfreesboro and Shelbyville. Contact us today to schedule a consultation to learn more.