After undergoing your orthodontic treatment at Jacobson & Tsou Orthodontics, you become the proud owner of a straighter, more confident smile. However, just because you’ve had your braces taken off, or have finished another form of orthodontic treatment like Invisalign, that doesn’t mean the work is done. In order to preserve your new, beautiful smile it is necessary to move on to the retention phase of orthodontic treatment.

You & Your Retainer

Maintaining the results you achieved during the orthodontic treatment process is dependent on your use of retainers. Your orthodontist will create retainers that are custom made to fit your unique smile, and will provide you with personalized instructions for how to wear them.

This is your retention phase of treatment, and it will last for a minimum of 24 months. However, ideally we would like you to continue wearing your retainers indefinitely. Your final orthodontic result depends on this phase, so follow through with the hard work you've put in so far by wearing your retainers as advised by your orthodontist.

Types of Retainers

In terms of style, our in-house lab offers a variety of designs and color combinations. Please ask us to show you our retainer book! In terms of type of retainer, you will have three kinds to choose from:

Hawley Retainers

The Hawley retainer is one of the most common types of retainers. It is removable and made of a combination of metal wires and sturdy acrylic. This type of retainer is specially made from impressions of your teeth, so it fits snugly and comfortably against the roof of your mouth while the wire and acrylic framing your teeth keep the retainers in perfect position.

Essix/Vacuform Retainer

The Essix/Vacuform retainer is a clear, removable retainer that fits over the entire arch of your teeth. Some benefits of the Essix/Vacuform retainer include:

  • No Metal Wires
  • Virtually Invisible
  • Easy to wear

Fixed/Bonded Retainers

Fixed retainers, or bonded lingual retainers, are cemented directly to the inside surface of your lower canine teeth. This is one of the best ways to prevent your lower teeth from shifting, as the retainers are permanently attached. Just like with removable retainers, it is important to keep fixed retainers clean. Therefore, when brushing your teeth, your orthodontist recommends carefully cleaning the inside of your lower teeth as well as the wire. If your retainer breaks at any point during the retention phase please do not adjust it yourself. Call our Chicago or Vernon Hills office immediately to schedule an emergency appointment.

Preserve Your Smile Today!

Through orthodontic treatment, you and your orthodontist work hard to attain a beautiful, straight smile. Safeguard that hard work and preserve your new smile by wearing your retainers (as prescribed by your orthodontist) once you get your braces off. It is the best way to secure that your straight new smile lasts a lifetime.

For questions regarding retention, braces, Invisalign, or another aspect of orthodontic treatment, contact the team at Jacobson & Tsou Orthodontics today—proudly serving Chicago, Vernon Hills, Skokie, Mundelein, and other surrounding communities with their smile needs.