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Essix Retainer

What is an Essix Retainer?

Essix Retainers provide a seamless solution for people looking to retain their teeth without the distractions of metal wires. Unlike traditional wire retainers, which can be uncomfortable and awkward to wear, Essix Retainers are made entirely of smooth, flexible plastic that adapts to your teeth’s shape and conforms to your gums. Moreover, with the ability to remove them whenever necessary, you won’t have to worry about food restrictions or difficulties brushing your teeth. Essix Retainers make it easy to maintain your pearly whites without drawing any unwanted attention.
At Orthodontic Experts, we take impressions of our patients’ teeth in order to create custom-made Essix Retainers that fit snugly over their teeth. This ensures that the retainer is not only comfortable but also provides optimal support to keep teeth in their correct positions. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and learn more about how Essix Retainers can help keep your smile looking great for years to come.
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essix retainer material

How Are Essix Retainers made?

  • Step 1: Taking an Impression Of The Patient’s Teeth

This is done by placing a tray filled with dental impression material over the patient’s teeth and having them bite down to create an accurate mold. The impression is then sent to a dental laboratory where a retainer is fabricated.

  • Step 2: Create a model

Once the dental lab receives the impression, they pour plaster or stone into the mold to create a positive model of the patient’s teeth. This model is used to make the retainer.

  • Step 3: Create the retainer

A flat sheet of the plastic material is heated to become pliable and then vacuum suctioned to the positive model of the patient’s teeth.

  • Step 4: Trimming and Finishing

The retainer is then trimmed of any excess material and any rough edges are smoothed out to provide a more comfortable fit.

  • Step 5: Fitting the retainer over patient’s teeth

Once the retainer is finished, it is sent back to the patient’s dentist or orthodontist for inspection and fitting.

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How do Essix Retainers Work?

If you have recently completed your orthodontic treatment with braces or Clear Aligners, your orthodontist may recommend you to use Essix Retainers. If you’re wondering how Essix Retainers work to keep your teeth in place, here’s all you need to know.

Diagnostic Phase

The orthodontist will examine your teeth, take x-rays, photos and use other imaging techniques to determine the right treatment plan depending on your needs.

Treatment Phase

The orthodontist will use an orthodontic appliance such as braces or Clear Aligners to shift your teeth into their desired positions. Orthodontic treatment will take a few months to a few years, depending on the severity of the case.

Retention Phase

After your treatment is complete, your orthodontist will recommend you to wear retainers that will keep your teeth in place and prevent them from shifting back to their original positions.

Pros and Cons of Essix Retainer

Essix Retainers have been one of the most popular options in the world of teeth retainers. They offer a range of benefits, but also have some downsides that may not make them the best option for everyone. Let’s find out the pros and cons of Retainers:


  • Discreet

Essix Retainers are made of a transparent plastic that makes them difficult to spot. This is great news for anyone who wants to maintain their incredible treatment results without drawing attention to their orthodontic work.

  • Easy to Clean

Clean them with a soft-bristled tooth brush and soak them in a cleaning solution to keep them hygienic and fresh.

  • Removable Appliance

Essix Retainers are removable, you don’t have to worry about them interfering with your eating and drinking habits.

  • Cost Effective

Compared to Clear Aligners Vivera Retainers, Essix Retainers tend to be more affordable, making them a smart choice for anyone on a budget.

  • Comfortable

Unlike bulky traditional retainers, Essix Retainers are made of a clear, removable plastic that is molded to your teeth for a secure and comfortable fit. Plus, the slim design of the Essix Retainer is less likely to irritate your mouth and cause difficulties with speaking.


  • Less Sturdy and Long-Lasting than Vivera Retainers

When compared to Vivera Retainers, Essix Retainers are less durable and can wear down faster over time.

  • Difficult to Repair

If an Essix Retainer breaks or loses its shape, it can be difficult to repair because the plastic is not as malleable as metal. In contrast, metal retainers can be easily adjusted and repaired if necessary.

  • May Warp if Exposed to Heat

Essix Retainers are made of a type of plastic that can warp or deform if exposed to heat. This means they should not be left in a hot car or subjected to high temperatures.

  • Shorter Lifespan

Essix Retainers typically need to be replaced sooner than Permanent or Hawley Retainers. Over time, the clear plastic can wear down, become discolored, or lose its shape, making the retainer less effective at keeping teeth in place.

  • Compliance

To be effective, Essix Retainers must be worn every night. This can be a hassle for some patients who may forget or neglect to wear them regularly. In contrast, Permanent Retainers do not require daily use.

Eating with an Essix Retainer

Fortunately, using an Essix Retainer doesn’t have to interfere with your regular eating habits. Essix Retainers are made of clear, thin plastic that covers the entire surface of your teeth, rather than being attached like Traditional Metal Braces. This means that you can easily remove the retainer for meals and drinks, and then clean and store it until you’re ready to put it back in. Here’s what you need to know about eating with an Essix Retainer:

Removing the Retainer for Meals

For the first few months after your orthodontic treatment, you will wear your Essix Retainer full-time. During this period, you’ll need to remove upper and lower retainers before eating or drinking anything besides water. Be sure to store your retainers in their case while you eat, and brush your teeth and rinse off the retainers before putting them back in. This will help keep your retainers clean and fresh, and avoid any build-up of bacteria that can cause bad breath or oral health problems.

Wearing the Retainer at Night

Once you switch to wearing your retainer only at night, eating and drinking can become even easier. Simply enjoy your meals and drinks throughout the day and wait to put your retainer on until after you’re finished eating. Remember to brush your teeth before putting your retainer in for the night, so that it stays fresh and clean. Flossing once a day is also important for maintaining good oral hygiene and preventing cavities or other dental problems.

No Food Restrictions

One of the great things about Essix Retainers is that they don’t come with any food restrictions. As long as you store your retainer safely and don’t leave it in your mouth while eating, you can enjoy all your favorite foods and drinks without worry. Just make sure to brush your teeth and rinse your retainers after meals and before bed. This will help keep your teeth and retainers clean and healthy, ensuring that your beautiful new smile lasts for a long time to come.

Cleaning & Caring for Your
Essix Retainer

If you have recently gotten Essix Retainers from Orthodontic Experts, it is important to take proper care of them to ensure they last long and maintain their clear appearance. Here are some tips for cleaning and caring for your Essix Retainers:

  • Brush and floss your teeth before putting in your retainers at night. This reduces bacteria buildup and helps keep your teeth healthy.
  • Clean your retainers as soon as you take them out in the morning. If saliva dries on the trays, it can be difficult to clean them.
  • You can use lukewarm water to brush both top and bottom retainers. If you need a deeper clean, you can use mild dish soap mixed with lukewarm water.
  • Use a soft-bristled toothbrush or a denture brush to scrub the retainers gently. Avoid using hot water or toothpaste, as they can damage the plastic.
  • If there are hard-to-reach grooves in your aligners, use a cotton swab to clean out those areas.
  • You can also soak your Clear Retainers in a special cleaning solution, as recommended by your orthodontist.
  • Over time, your Essix Retainers will become discolored as the plastic ages. This is normal and expected. If this happens, you must switch to a fresh set of retainers.
  • If your Essix Retainers become damaged or misshapen due to heat, crushing, or other accident, you will need to replace them with a new set. You can switch to a new set or just the individual tray that is damaged.
caring for your essix retainers

By following these simple tips, you can keep your Essix Retainers in top condition, ensuring that they continue to provide excellent results for your smile. If you have any questions or concerns about your retainers, feel free to contact Orthodontic Experts for more information.

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essix retainer cost

How Much Do Essix Retainers Cost?

Orthodontic Experts is a well-known brand when it comes to orthodontic services and products. Essix Retainers are a popular choice for those who have undergone orthodontic treatment and want to maintain their beautifully straight teeth. But how much do these retainers cost? Well, the cost of Essix Retainers from Orthodontic Experts can vary depending on the number of retainers needed.
Typically, the cost can range from $100 to $300 per retainer. Orthodontic Experts’ team of professionals can provide a personalized treatment plan and a cost estimate for Essix Retainers based on the specific needs of each patient.  It’s best to schedule a consultation with Orthodontic Experts to get an accurate quote for your Essix Retainers.
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Speak to our Orthodontist about Your Retainer Options

Once your braces are removed, your teeth will need time to settle into their new positions. This settling process can take anywhere from a few months to a year. Your orthodontist will recommend a retainer to keep your teeth in place throughout this settling process.
At Orthodontic Experts, we offer a variety of retainer options to suit your needs and preferences. Our orthodontist can guide you through the process of choosing the right retainer for your unique situation. If you’ve recently had your braces removed or are considering orthodontic treatment in the future, schedule a consultation with Orthodontic Experts today to learn more about your options. We specialize in providing quality orthodontic care and our team of experts can help you find the perfect retainer for your needs. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us today!
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frequently asked questions

Essix Retainer FAQs

How Long Do You Wear an Essix Retainer?

Essix Retainers are custom-made for each individual patient and are typically worn after orthodontic treatment. According to the American Dental Association, patients should wear their retainers for the first two to three months at all times and then at night afterward. However, it’s crucial to note that these are just general guidelines. Depending on your unique orthodontic needs, your orthodontist will provide you with personalized instructions on how often and how long you should wear your Essix Retainer.

How long do Essix Retainers last?

The longevity of Essix Retainers depends on the care they are given. With proper care and use, Essix Retainers can last up to 3 years. Some people may experience wear and tear early and need a replacement within a few months. If you ever suspect your retainers are damaged, get in touch with Orthodontic Experts near you and get them replaced immediately.

How much does it cost to replace an Essix Retainer?

The cost of replacing an Essix Retainer can vary depending on several factors such as the dentist’s fee, location, and the specific type of retainer needed. Insurance policies may cover some or all of the cost, but it is best to check with your insurance provider to confirm. It is important to note that a well-maintained retainer can last for at least 3 years, so it is essential to take good care of it to avoid the need for frequent replacements.

Are Essix Retainers effective?

Essix Retainers are a highly effective way to maintain your orthodontic treatment results. They are designed to fit snugly over your teeth and are made from clear plastic, which makes them more discreet than traditional wire retainers. Because they are custom-made to fit your teeth, Essix Retainers are very effective at ensuring that your teeth remain in the correct position after your orthodontic treatment is complete.

What happens if I forget or choose not to wear my retainer?

Wearing your Essix Retainer as prescribed by your orthodontist is essential for maintaining the alignment of your teeth. If you forget to wear your retainer for an extended period, your teeth may start to shift back to their original position, undoing all the progress made during orthodontic treatment. If you consistently wear your retainer as prescribed, you’ll be able to prevent this from happening. In the event that you forget to wear your retainer, wearing it consistently for a few days should help to correct any minor teeth movement.

Are Essix Retainers painful?

Essix Retainers are known for being comfortable and easy to wear. While you may experience some minor discomfort during the first few days of wearing your retainer, this discomfort should subside relatively quickly as your mouth adjusts to the retainer. If you experience any pain or discomfort while wearing your retainer, contact your orthodontist. They will be able to examine you and adjust your retainer as needed to make it more comfortable for you.

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