How Long Do Retainers Need to Be Worn?

Clear plastic retainers in a purple case
Patients need to wear retainers after they finish braces treatment.

Upon completion of treatment, we provide our patients with retainers that are customized for their new smiles. These retainers are designed to prevent their teeth from shifting or moving back to their original position. Retainers are for life, and they need to be worn to keep beautiful, finished FreySmiles intact. One of the most common questions we get at FreySmiles Orthodontics is how long retainers will need to be worn after braces come off. 

How Long Do You Need to Wear a Retainer?

Our Doctors will give each patient instructions for their retainer based on their smile, but on average, patients need to wear retainers for 8-12 hours each night after orthodontic treatment. We supervise our patients for one year following treatment, during the initial stabilization phase, before they are officially graduated and no longer need to be seen by our office. Follow-up visits during this retention phase are complimentary. Working together, we can get the maximum lifetime benefit from our patients’ investment of time, money, and effort so that their FreySmiles will continue to open doors for the rest of their lives! 

Why Do I Need to Wear a Retainer?

Retainers are not used to move teeth or correct crooked teeth. They are used to maintain your newly straightened smile after braces treatment to keep the teeth from shifting back into place. This process is called relapsing. 

Our teeth shift as we age. Studies show that this growth and movement continues throughout our lives and can even occur in our old age. While this is a natural part of the aging process, it can be frustrating, especially after wearing braces. 

Wearing a retainer is like having an orthodontist in your pocket, and patients should take advantage of wearing them even after it is no longer prescribed. If a patient does not wear their retainer after braces treatment, there is a possibility that action will need to be taken to re-straighten the teeth. This means that they could need to undergo other forms of orthodontic treatment or have braces put back on.  

Lehigh Valley Orthodontists You Can Trust

The doctors at FreySmiles orthodontists can give you a beautiful, healthy smile that you can enjoy for the rest of your life. At FreySmiles Orthodontics, we treat you like family, which means you get the highest level of orthodontic care in the Lehigh Valley.   

If you have questions about retainers or are interested in scheduling an appointment with one of our experienced orthodontists, contact us at one of our four conveniently located orthodontic offices in Bethlehem, Schnecksville, Lehighton, and Allentown.