Retainers are an essential tool for maintaining the results from your braces treatment. While the use of retainers can vary by patient, it is generally recommended to wear them on a daily basis to prevent your teeth from shifting. Without retainers, your teeth might shift so far that a repeated braces treatment is needed. Nobody wants that! So, what happens if you don’t wear your retainer for a few days, or even a week? We’ll take a look below.
Immediately After the Removal of Braces
The months immediately following the removal of braces are the most critical time in correcting the teeth – perhaps even more critical than the braces treatment itself. During this time, the teeth are still adapting to their new position. This means that they are still able to shift significantly. If you don’t wear your retainer during this period, you can experience some drastic changes in the positioning of the teeth. Even if you miss just one week of wearing a retainer, your teeth can experience shifts that will require additional treatment. Stay consistent during this period!
Adjusting to a Retainer Schedule
After the initial braces removal, and a few months of consistent retainer use, your teeth will become more anchored in their new position. At this point, you can transition to a less frequent retainer use. For example, you can begin wearing your retainer exclusively at night – allowing you to be retainer-free during the day. However, be sure to consult your orthodontist about this transition. They can provide you with clearer guidelines based on your previous treatment.
Can You Get Away with Not Wearing a Retainer?
Ultimately, the impact of not wearing a retainer will vary depending on the patient and the length of time since their braces treatment. However, generally all patients will experience some kind of teeth shift, rotation or spacing if they fail to follow the retainer use recommended by their orthodontist. Don’t make this mistake – nobody wants to repeat a braces treatment.
If you have any additional questions about retainer use or braces treatments in general, please contact us today. We are proud to offer orthodontic services to the residents of Virginia Beach and the nearby areas.