Vacuum Formed Retainer
Vacuum formed retainers are thin braces made from a clear plastic sheet, which looks similar to a gum shield in terms of its shape. These are typically used to prevent the teeth from shifting back to their former position once a fixed brace has been removed.
How does it differ from other retainers?
The retainers prevent the teeth from moving and are easy to wear, which has made it a popular choice for patients. In some cases, a Hawley retainer will be the better option because it is a stronger retainer made from wire and plastic and lets your back teeth settle slightly.
Will the retainer be provided by my dentist or orthodontist?
An orthodontist will give you a retainer to be used once the fixed brace has been removed. It will need to be worn at nights.
How long will it need to be worn?
You will need to wear the appliance for at least a year after the brace has been removed. A lot of now recommend that you wear the device until all growth has stopped at around the age of 22, but it may be necessary to continue wear long after this time. If you do not wear the device it is almost certain that your teeth will start to relapse.
How should the retainer be cleaned?
It should be cleaned with soap and a toothbrush. Toothpaste should not be used as some of the products may harm the plastic in the retainer. If the device is being cleaned over the sink you should put some water in the sink as a precaution in case you drop it. It is possible to buy proprietary cleaning agents.
What should I do if my retainer gets lost or damaged?
You should get in touch with your dentist as soon as possible so that they can provide you with a replacement.