So, you’ve got that dazzling smile you always dreamed of, thanks to your trusty plastic retainer. It’s been your steadfast companion since you wrapped up your orthodontic journey. But here’s the deal – your retainer isn’t meant to last forever and it plays a more significant role in maintaining your pearly whites than you might think.
Hold On To Your Straight Teeth
Picture this: You wore braces or some other orthodontic contraption for months, maybe even years, to get your teeth into that picture-perfect alignment. But here’s the issue – teeth like to move. If you’re not careful and consistent with wearing your retainer, they might start to shimmy their way back to their original, less than appealing positions.
Signs It’s Time To Ditch Your Old Retainer
So we’ve established that keeping your plastic retainer is vital for preserving your orthodontic masterpiece. But how do you know when it’s time to part ways with your old set?
Visible wear and tear: If your retainer looks like it has been to war, with visible cracks, chips or deformities, it is time to retire it. Furthermore, discolouration can give an indication as to the amount of time you’ve had it regardless of how spotless you attempted to keep it.
Funky Odour: If your retainer has taken on an unpleasant aroma no matter how much you scrub it, it’s best to say your goodbyes. This not only puts people off your breath if you have them in, it also makes you feel uncomfortable having the taste of a six month old retainer in your mouth and trust us, it’s not tasty.
Fit Problems: If your retainer doesn’t fit as snugly as it used to, it’s not doing its job properly. Loose retainers won’t keep your teeth in place and they are not loose because your teeth are conforming to the shape, it’s because the plastic has adjusted to your teeth and over time, shifts occur to slowly expand the plastic.
Understanding Dental Retainer Replacement
Now that we’ve covered why replacing your retainer is essential, let’s talk about how to go about it. You can reach out to a dental professional, ideally, the same one who helped you get your retainer in the first place. They’ll assess your situation, take impressions if necessary and hook you up with a shiny new retainer.
Your plastic retainer is more than just a piece of plastic – it’s the guardian of your gorgeous smile. To keep your teeth in their rightful place, pay attention to the signs and when it’s time, don’t hesitate to replace that trusty old retainer. Your future self will thank you and your smile will stay brilliantly beautiful for years to come.