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About Retainers

If you’ve recently finished your orthodontic treatment, your next step is to get retainers, which are clear trays that fit the outline of your teeth and keep them from shifting. MyOrthodontist offers custom-made retainers that snugly fit your unique smile. Your smile is an investment. Take care of it by setting up an appointment for retainers online or over the phone today. MyOrthodontist has 13 locations throughout North Carolina in Burgaw, Cary, Chapel Hill, Concord, Durham, Fayetteville, Greensboro, Mount Airy, Raleigh, Roanoke Rapids, Rocky Mount, Sanford, and Wake Forest, North Carolina.

Retainers Q & A

What are retainers, and how do they work?

Retainers are small metal and plastic or clear plastic mouthpieces that fit over your teeth. Retainers can also be small wires that are glued to the tongue side of your teeth. These are often referred to as ‘permanent’ retainers. Typically, patients wear retainers after they get their braces off. In this case, retainers help them retain the new position of their teeth.

People can also use retainers to:

  • Improve speech impediments
  • Close gaps in the teeth
  • Resolve certain medical problems, like TMD

Retainers work by disallowing teeth to shift as new bone and tissue build around them. 

How long do I have to wear my retainer?

How long you have to wear your retainer depends on a couple of factors, such as how consistently you wear your retainer and the type of correction you received. 

Typically, though, orthodontists recommend you wear your retainer for at least a year. For the first 4-6 months, you’ll likely need to wear the retainer during the day and night. After that, you can leave your retainer off during the day, as long as you wear it at night.

How do you care for retainers?

To keep your containers working well, you need to take care of them. To do so, you need to wear, clean, and store them properly.


When you’re wearing your retainers, it can be tempting to flip them around in your mouth. Avoid doing this, because doing so causes their wires to bend.


For your health and for the effectiveness of your retainers, you need to keep them clean and relatively germ-free. 

Different retainers require different cleaning materials, so make sure to ask the MyOrthodontist team what type of material you can use on your retainers. For example, you can clean some retainers with toothpaste, while others work better with denture cleaner or mouthwash.


When you’re not wearing your retainer set, put it in its case. Never carry it loose in your pockets or purse, as it could easily get lost and/or damaged that way. 

Retainers can crack if they get too dry, so if you’re leaving yours off for a whole day or overnight, soak them in water. Just make sure that this water isn’t too hot, or your retainers could warp. Likewise, never leave retainers in an area of high heat, like a hot car.

If you or your child recently had braces, or if you’re seeking to correct a dental issue like a misaligned jaw, invest in retainers. The sooner you get them, the better they work. 

Schedule your appointment with MyOrthodontist online or over the phone today.



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