A Complete Guide To Permanent Retainer

Permanent retainers are made up of metal wires that are fixed to the teeth and prevent it from moving and make them permanently fixed to the jaws. The wire used is strong and braided. Permanent retainers are usually recommended by orthodontists after the removal of braces as it restricts any movements of the teeth and helps them to remain intact. These retainers are fixed in such a manner that it keeps the crooked tooth from moving to its original position.

You may also be recommended by your orthodontist to go for a permanent retainer if you find it difficult to comply with their removable ones. However, for the bonding material, there must be a certain amount of tooth surface to protect the retainer or to give support to it. 

In several situations, orthodontists use both temporary and permanent storage systems to achieve the best long-term performance. However, a recent survey showed that nowadays permanent retainers become more popular.

A typical use of removable holders is for the top teeth and the permanent holders on the lower teeth, however, the retainers to be used depends on your teeth. Our teeth change as we age, a permanent retainer generally has better long-term results than a removable one. However, one of the drawbacks of permanent retainer is flossing. Some patients find it harder to floss with a constant restrain on their teeth.

Removable retainers 


Permanent Retainer

The benefits of removable retainers are easy to use. You usually position removable holders at night and pick them up in the morning. Sometimes, though, you can forget a removable retainer and you cannot take full advantage of teeth holding. 

A removable retainer also has a potential advantage: you can quickly take and brush and floss your teeth, which is more a challenge with a constant container. Even if removed storage devices can be very useful, they are not as effective as permanent storage devices, particularly if not employed as guided.

Permanent retainers

Permanent retainers are usually known as bonded retainers, lingual wire, fixed retainers. Usually, an orthodontist uses permanent retainers on the lower jaw and removable retainers on the upper jaws.

Permanent retainers also known as a lingual wire, this wire is used to keep the crooked teeth in the correct position and stuck to the jaw. For long-term productive usage, the binding material is easier to firmly adhere to lower teeth such as the cuspids (canine teeth). The name “permanent retainers” reflects just what the system does: it sits permanently on your teeth to prevent them from moving. For the rest of your life, you may have a lasting grip on your teeth. If it is painful or causes too much plaque or tartar to accumulate on your teeth, your dentist or orthodontist may suggest removing a permanent retainer. In India, permanent retainer cost is 3500-5000 onwards. 

 Permanent retainer pros and cons

Pros of permanent retainers

Permanent retainers have the following pros or advantages:

  • You do not need to fix or remove it now and then. It has a higher probability to fix your teeth than removable retainers as they keep your teeth intact and in place.
  • They are not easier to spot and no one can make out that you have teeth retainers attached.
  • It does not get in your way while you are speaking.
  • People tend to forget to wear a removable retainer at times, this situation does not arise in case of permanent retainers.
  • Permanent retainers do not get damaged easily even after everyday usage.
  • It helps to keep your teeth in place.

You may feel like permanent retainers are better than removable retainers, however, there are certain drawbacks associated with permanent retainers. It is important to understand the pros and cons that it offers before making a choice.

Cons of permanent retainers

  • As permanent retainers require fixing the retainers permanently on the jaws, the procedure for the same may be long, comfortable and even painful. Sometimes, it may take hours to fix the retainer to the teeth. On the other hand, a removable retainer is made to fit your jaws and teeth.
  • One may find it difficult to brush or floss when having a permanent retainer. This can even lead to bacterial infection, accumulation or cavities due to improper cleaning.
  • Having a permanent retainer fixed to your mouth and jaw can be uncomfortable at times as it is made up of metal wiring. Further, one may even hurt his tongue when it is rubbed against the wire.
  • It may restrict you to eat a certain type of food, particularly food that is hard to chew or bite. One may have to restrict their diet to comparatively softer food or even liquid food for a few days, in case they find it difficult to eat. It can be frustrating at times.
  • The wire may even suffer wear and tear or damage which requires to be replaced or repaired.

What to do when the retainer suffers damages?

In case your retainer has suffered any kind of damage, do not try to fix it yourself. In case you apply too much pressure on it, it may bend even more and the wire can even injure your jaw or teeth. The retainer will no longer hold your teeth in the right place if the wires are damaged. Visit your orthodontist in case the retainer is damaged. Avoid touching or fixing it, as it can result in injury due to loosened wires. Visit the doctor immediately, as only the doctor will be able to fix or repair it.

How to clean permanent retainers

Clean the container daily to maintain it properly and protect your teeth around the area. Brush, as usual, take care that your bristles go around and through all the cracks between your teeth so that no place, particularly areas around the bound material or behind the wire itself, is overlooked.

Permanent retainers may be a better option than removable retainers but it differs from individual to individual. One may find a removable retainer better than permanent one or vice-versa. Both the retainers have their pros and cons and one must keep these in mind while choosing according to their needs. Talk to your doctor before choosing as the doctor will explain it better and also suggest what is best for you.

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