What is a retainer?


A retainer is a tooth stabiliser that is often used in the course of orthodontic treatment. The aim of the retainer is to keep the teeth in their current position and to accustom the roots of the teeth to the new position. For example, after treatment of a tooth misalignment, with the help of braces, a retainer is used to secure the progress and prevent the teeth from shifting again. There are two common forms of retainer, which are described below.



Removable retainer


The removable retainer looks like a loose brace and should be worn 24 hours a day if possible. A great advantage of this type of retainer is that it can be removed from the mouth before brushing the teeth so that the teeth can be thoroughly cleaned. However, the self-discipline required to wear the retainer all day is problematic, as it is visually noticeable and interferes with speaking.



Adhesive retainer


The adhesive retainer, a thin, specially adapted wire, is usually glued to the inside of the front teeth and is thus firmly attached there. Similar to fixed braces, it is automatically worn all day and is therefore very effective. The adhesive retainer is also usually invisible and offers no other restrictions for the wearer. After a short period of getting used to the wire, the retainer is hardly noticed. A major disadvantage of the fixed retainer, however, is the restriction of dental care. Similar to the brackets of fixed braces, it is difficult to brush the teeth properly around the retainer. The use of dental floss is also significantly restricted.



Is a retainer useful?


A retainer makes sense, because without it, the success of orthodontic treatment often disappears within a short period of time. This is due to the natural changes in the jaw, especially during the growth phases. With electric toothbrushes, such as our happybrush toothbrush, it is also easy to avoid the negative effects on dental care. Plaque that builds up in the hard-to-reach areas between the retainer and the tooth can be effectively removed with the happybrush.



Using electric toothbrushes with retainers?


The use of electric toothbrushes with a fixed retainer is usually not a problem. With our happybrush toothbrush you can also ensure thorough oral hygiene at the border areas between retainer and tooth. The best thing to do is to ask your dentist at your next check-up which brushing method they recommend!



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