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After your braces were installed and have successfully realigned your teeth into their ideal position, they can finally be removed. However, you will need to use some form of retainer for a while afterward. This is to counter the residual tension lingering in the periodontal ligaments. If this tension is not countered, your teeth will slowly drift out of alignment in a process known as relapse.

If your braces provided a significant amount of realignment, then we might recommend installing a fixed retainer. This is basically a sturdy metal band that is cemented in place behind your teeth in critical locations. This will serve to hold them steadfast in their new position.

Since a fixed retainer is cemented in place and can’t be removed, it will require daily brushing and flossing, just like your old braces did. To help brush away plaque and food particles from hard to reach places, you might want to try using interdental brushes. You could also try using oral irrigators or a dental water jet.

If you find flossing between the teeth and around the gum line is a challenging, you might want to try using a floss threader with waxed floss. The wax coating also helps the strand of floss slip into place easier.

If you have questions about the best way to clean your fixed retainer, you can always call Dr. Shabbir Adenwalla’s office in Middleburg Heights, Ohio at 440-243-9575 to ask a question.