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After months, or perhaps even a year or more, it will finally be time for your braces to be removed. You will have reached an important milestone which will be the transition from braces to your retainer. In many cases, that means the end is in sight for your orthodontic treatments. You will need to wear your retainer for the length of time prescribed by your orthodontist to ensure that your teeth and jaw ligaments settle into their new positions. But it is possible for your retainer break, and when that happens, you need to let your orthodontist know.

There are essentially two types of retainers. Fixed retainers are placed in your mouth by your orthodontist and cannot be removed. The wire runs behind your teeth. A removable retainer is made of a piece of acrylic that fits in your mouth and has a wire runs along the front of your teeth.

You may not know that you have broken your fixed retainer until you start to notice that your teeth are drifting out of alignment. If that is the case, you should contact your orthodontist right away, and he will get you in as soon as possible. You will also need to contact your orthodontist to have a new removable retainer made if it should break. Making sure that you remove your retainer for sports and other times when it might be at risk from a collision will keep your retainer in good shape. In the meantime, you should eat soft foods and wear a mouthguard when you sleep at night to keep your teeth from grinding against one another.

If you are thinking about improving your smile with braces or another orthodontic procedure, our orthodontist, Dr. Lawrence Wu at NuSmile Dental & Orthodontics will be happy to talk with you. If you live in the San Jose, California, area and would like to make an appointment with our office, please call 408-266-2800 today to schedule an appointment.