A fixed retainer is a great way to ensure your teeth stay in their new position. It can be used as a permanent alternative to a removable retainer.
Fixed retainers are often recommended for orthodontic patients who’ve had significant teeth realignment treatment, often due to a severe malocclusion such as overcrowding. The fixed retainer helps to make sure your teeth don’t drift out of their new position.
The retainer is made up of a thin metal band that’s attached directly to the back of your teeth. This means the retainer is completely out of sight.
Though fixed retainers can have a very positive impact on your smile, they do require a bit of extra thought when it comes to cleaning your teeth. It’s permanently fixed in place, so you can’t take it out to brush your teeth. It can also be trickier to clean around as it’s on the back of your teeth and more difficult to reach.
As with any kind of fixed brace, it’s really important that you spend a bit of extra time cleaning it. Fixed braces offer extra nooks and crannies for food residue to get caught in. If food is able to stay there for any length of time, it can result in plaque and tooth decay.
If you have a fixed retainer, we suggest you use an interdental brush to clean around it. These small brush heads will make it much easier to get into the gaps behind the retainer and make sure there’s nothing lurking there.
Dental floss is also still important: many people who wear fixed retainers find waxed tape easier to work with around the retainer.
Finally, a good dentist-recommended mouthwash can be an extra helping hand in getting rid of unwanted food residue.
Would you like to find out more about fixed retainers? We’ve shared an overview of why they can be so helpful here.