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Congratulations, you’ve successfully undergone your orthodontic treatment with Invisalign® to straighten your pearly whites! Now that your teeth are aligned, you want to make sure they stay that way. You’ll need to wear a retainer at night, that gently keeps your teeth in their new position. Without it, your teeth will gradually shift back to where they were before you started.

To avoid that, your retainer can make sure that your smile continues to look fabulous while your bite stays healthy. If you don’t, it might not look like the teeth are moving but they are. You can tell because when you try to put your retainer on after not wearing it for several days, it will feel tight and uncomfortable. Not to worry though, as long as you wear your retainer as instructed your smile will stay safely aligned!

Why Teeth Shift

When you wear your Invisalign aligners, the jawbone holding your teeth in place softens or even becomes re-absorbed to allow your teeth to shift. Your body will rebuild sufficient new bone to keep your teeth in place but that can take 9 to 12 months for the bone to be deposited around your teeth to hold them. After this time, Dr. Igel may reduce your retainer wearing time down to three to five times each week.

Think of wearing your retainers as the valuable tool they are to maintain your beautiful new smile! Be sure to let us know if you lose your retainer so we can replace it quickly to keep your teeth safely in their new position. If you lose your retainer, contact our office to schedule an appointment.