After investing time and money into straightening your teeth—and achieving the smile of your dreams—the last thing you want is to undo all that hard work. So how can you keep your smile in tip-top shape? Here are three ways to protect straight teeth after braces or Invisalign:
Wear Your Retainer
The most important thing you can do to stop your teeth from moving is to wear your retainer regularly. Teeth are likely to shift dramatically without its help! Make it a habit to wear your retainer full time or nightly, as recommended by your dentist or orthodontist, to solidify your teeth’s new positions.
Take Care of Your Teeth
Now that your braces are off, keeping up good oral hygiene habits will help safeguard your brand new smile. Brush and floss regularly to keep your teeth and gums healthy. And don’t forget to brush your retainer too!
In addition, soon after your braces come off, but sure to schedule a full dental cleaning and checkup to ensure your teeth are strong and healthy.
Watch for Signs of Teeth Shifting
No one knows your mouth better than you do. So if you notice your teeth moving after braces, take action quickly to prevent a relapse.
Teeth shifting after braces can be a sign of wisdom teeth coming in and crowding the teeth, or of a retainer that no longer fits properly. This can happen if your retainer somehow gets bent or damaged—or if you don’t wear your retainer enough, and your teeth have gradually shifted back toward their original positions.
If you’ve already noticed this shifting in your mouth, you might be wondering: Will my retainer move teeth back? In some cases, if the shifting is minimal, your retainer might be able to guide teeth back into place—but, unfortunately, if you go without your retainer for so long that new bone tissue develops, you may need braces or Invisalign to re-straighten teeth.
Luckily, it’s easier and takes less time to straighten teeth that are only mildly crooked, so if you notice changes in your smile, don’t hesitate to schedule an appointment with your dentist or orthodontist to keep your smile looking its best.
You’ve got the beautiful, straight smile you’ve always wanted—let’s keep it that way! Be sure to wear your retainer, take care of your teeth, and contact Dr. Giaquinto at Cottonwood Dental at the first sign of movement.
And if you notice your teeth moving after braces years later? Don’t hesitate to ask us about Invisalign treatment to realign your teeth without the look of braces.