Straightening your teeth is a process that can have a big impact on the appearance of your smile and the health of your mouth. After the braces are removed, you can expect to feel some tightness or pain for a few hours. If the pain persists, it's important to contact your orthodontist to make sure everything is alright. The ligaments that hold your teeth in place become softer during the straightening process, and these fibers remain loose after the braces are removed.
This means that your teeth will start to move almost immediately, although it won't be noticeable until later. To prevent this from happening, you'll likely be given a retainer after treatment is finished. It's essential that you use the retainer as instructed in order to keep your smile looking freshly straightened. Orthodontics refers to the phase after the removal of orthodontic appliances as retention. Everyone who wears braces needs to wear a retainer while their teeth, bones, and gums adjust to their new position. Naturally, the teeth want to return to their original place, especially in the first few months after the end of active treatment.
Teeth also move with age, but retainers help reduce the amount of movement and keep your teeth where they should be. Your body also undergoes constant changes - just like elastin and collagen levels in our skin decrease over time and cause wrinkles, the structures that hold our teeth in place also age. The tongue can also cause normal wear and tear that can influence changes in the placement of the teeth. On average, once orthodontic appliances are placed, they usually stay in place for 1 to 3 years. After removing their braces, most people need to wear a retainer all the time for the first 6 months.
After that, you should only use it while you sleep, but you can do it for many years. It's common for teeth to start returning to their original places after wearing braces, and whether the upper or lower teeth move more will depend on the unique structure of the mouth. If you forgot to wear the retainer for a few weeks and your teeth have moved, using it can help your teeth return to their proper position. Sometimes, the eruption or impact of wisdom teeth can damage surrounding teeth and ruin all the hard work of orthodontic appliances. If you stop wearing the retainer and your teeth move, wearing it again could cause your teeth to return to their aligned position. Depending on your specific treatment plan, it can take up to three years to straighten your teeth, but that's still a relatively short period of time in the big picture.
While it's normal to experience some natural tooth settlement after treatment is finished, significant changes or displacement of the front teeth are a cause for concern. Dental retainers cannot apply the constant and constant force needed to move teeth to their correct positions. To keep these changes to a minimum, simply thoroughly clean the back of the teeth around the retainer and use dental floss to clean under the wire and between the teeth.