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Now that your braces and the adjustment sessions with Dr. Merissa Blais have successfully realigned your teeth, your braces can be removed. However, even once your braces are off, there will still be some residual tension in the periodontal ligaments that anchor each tooth in its socket. If this residual tension is not counteracted in some way, your teeth will slowly start to change their orientation. This process, which is known as relapse, can be effectively counteracted by wearing a retainer until the residual tension in the periodontal ligaments finally subsides.

There are three different types of retainers in Scarsdale, New York, that your orthodontist, Dr. Merissa Blais, commonly recommends.

Hawley retainers are the most common type of retainer. This is a thin, acrylic appliance that is molded to the shape of the roof of your mouth. It is removable but it securely attaches to your teeth with wires.

A clear, plastic retainer is used if your teeth only needed minor adjustment. The clear, plastic material makes it hard for people to notice that the retainer is even in your mouth.

A fixed retainer is necessary if you needed a significant amount of adjustment, particularly in your lower front teeth. A fixed retainer is usually a firm, metal wire that is cemented behind your teeth.

It’s normal for your mouth to produce some excess saliva for the first few days after you start wearing a retainer. After a while, your mouth will adapt and your saliva production should return to normal.

If you are due to have your braces removed and you have questions about the type of retainer that is right for you, you can call Blais Orthodontics at 914.472.9595 for a consultation.