Top Orthodontist: Braces, Invisalign

Permanent Retainer

Once you are done with your braces, your orthodontist at orthodontic experts may place a permanent retainer in your mouth. When you finally get your braces off, you’ll likely find you have a choice between wearing removable retainers regularly at night, and having a permanent or lingual retainer bonded to the back of your teeth. Teeth can move back over time once the influence of braces goes away; wearing a bonded retainer after orthodontic treatment prevents your teeth from moving back into their old, incorrect positions.

A permanent retainer, also known as a bonded retainer or fixed retainer, involves a metal bar or wire that holds your teeth where they are, preventing them from moving after an orthodontic treatment. This is typically used after a braces removal when your teeth are nicely aligned. Retainer helps prevent issues such as gapping or crowding.

Typically these retainers are bonded to the inside of the lower front teeth because the lower front teeth have the shortest, smallest roots, which means that they’re more likely to shift over time due to their smaller foundations. At Orthodontic Experts we had patients who had previous orthodontics and were not the most diligent about wearing retainers, their lower front teeth started to shift back.

Bonded retainers are different than a Vivera retainer, Essix retainer, or a Hawley retainer, which all are removable. Once a permanent retainer is fixed to your teeth, it’s not coming out unless something goes wrong.

A permanent retainer is the perfect fit for someone who does not want to go through the hassle of remembering to wear and fix the retainer everyday. It is placed on the inner side, so it is not visible to everyone, and it stays in one place and can be taken care of through normal hygiene and 60 seconds of floss.

The need for retainers occurs after the braces are removed. The teeth have the tendency to move places slowly even after the braces have straightened them out. The retainers are to keep that effect in place. The requirement to keep them on teeth depends on the age of the patient, but on average they can comfortably stay for 5 years.

Your permanent retainer broke? You should visit Orthodontic Experts to get it fixed as soon as you can. You will probably have the option to get it removed and replaced, or you can choose to get a removable one so your permanent one doesn’t break again. If you find your retainer broken in some way, you should do immediately inspect the damage if part of the wire has got loose or a wire is poking out and causing pain and discomfort, you should visit Orthodontic Experts to get it fixed. Avoid hard, sticky, or gummy foods because a permanent retainer is a lot like having braces. You would never want your bonded retainer to break off any more than it already has. If the retainer cuts your tongue or the inside of your cheek, prevent infection and help cuts heal by rinsing your mouth with warm salt water.

How to floss with a permanent retainer?

Flossing is necessary to keep your teeth clean with a permanent retainer. Floss is a thin filament in the form of a chord. Take a chord around 18 to 20 inches long for all spaces and work with about 2 inches for each individual space. Slide the tip of it between the space of your teeth, now move it in and out gently between your teeth. Make sure not to slide against the gum, as the force can damage them. Make sure to remove all food pieces between the teeth, and then move on to the next space. It takes around 60 seconds of your day once you are in practice.

floss with permanent retainer

If you feel that  your retainer might have bent or is moving, look for someone you trust and ask them to examine for you. If it does, then book to see your orthodontist right away so there is no harm caused. Just in case this occurs at night, buy a mouthguard so that you can sleep peacefully without letting the retainer hurt you.

Permanent vs. Removable retainers

The permanent retainers stay wired to your teeth constantly while the removable retainers can, of course, be removed. You will need to floss regularly for 60 seconds if you have permanent ones, as for removable ones it is not necessary. With permanent retainers you are able to eat more variety of food which you could not when you had braces, but still with care. The permanent retainers have a higher success rate than removable retainers.

Permanent retainers are attached on the inside of the teeth. They are made of a metal wire that is bonded to the teeth with dental cement or glue.

A bonded retainer eliminates the chance of human error because you can’t forget to wear it. One of the best advantages of a fixed retainer is that it takes the pressure off the patient because the retainer is permanently cemented to the teeth and patients don’t need to worry about remembering to wear the retainer every night, or keep it clean outside of regular oral hygiene.  

A permanent retainer is completely invisible because it’s placed behind the teeth, and is often thinner and more comfortable to wear than a wire removable retainer.

Lastly, while a bonded retainer usually requires an adjustment period, many individuals find that eventually, they forget they even have one.

Cons of a Permanent Retainer

There are a few disadvantages of permanent retainers such as they can make it difficult to properly clean teeth, the wire can trap food, bacteria, and other debris, increasing the risk of dental problems, especially if you don’t brush and floss regularly, they can become damaged or wear down over time, so you may have to replace it at some point. Since they are only affixed to the front teeth, they can’t help keep side or back teeth aligned.

How Much Does Permanent Retainer Cost?

For some patients a permanent retainer cost might seems a bit higher and they can say it’s quite priced but remember that it’s meant to keep your teeth straight for decades and help you maintain the beautiful smile you have got after a long period of wearing braces.

A permanent retainer cost can be up to $500 for one and $1,000 if you get a retainer on your both lower and upper teeth.

permanent retainer cost

If you are questioning whether a bonded retainer may be right for you, contact Orthodontic Experts today for more information about permanent retainers! At Orthodontic Experts, we have a team of experienced and qualified orthodontist that can provide professional insight on any questions or concerns you may have with your teeth. You can visit any of our office near you. We have offices at multiple locations in Illinois. Schedule a free consultation now.

This information contained on this website is for the purposes of learning more about the different treatment options.

Skip to content