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The braces your dentist, Dr. David Umansky, installed in your mouth effectively repositioned your teeth to address alignment issues and give you a more appealing smile. Your routine adjustment sessions applied moderate, progressive tension to the periodontal ligaments that are anchoring each tooth in its socket. Now that your teeth have achieved their ideal alignment, he can remove the braces.

However, there will still be some lingering tension in the periodontal ligaments. To prevent your teeth from relapsing toward their old positions, Dr. David Umansky will fit you for one of three types of retainers in Humble, Texas.

The most common type of retainer is known as a Hawley. This is a thin, tongue-shaped piece of acrylic that is custom fit to the shape of your mouth. The retainer is removable. When it’s in your mouth, it is secured by a set of wires that lock onto specific teeth.

A clear, plastic retainer might be called for if your braces only provided a minor realignment. It’s hard for the casual observer to even notice you’re wearing the retainer.

If your upper or lower teeth needed significant realignment by your braces, Dr. David Umansky might need to install a fixed retainer behind the pertinent teeth. This is a sturdy metal band that is cemented in place.

The length of time you’ll need to use the retainer will vary depending on the degree of tension in your periodontal ligaments. Over time, Dr. David Umansky might change the length of time you need to use a retainer. You should expect to use a retainer in some form for the same amount of time it took to fully realign your teeth.

If you are due to have your braces removed soon and you have questions about retainers, you can always call 281-446-4700 to speak to someone at Aesthetic Dentistry Associates.