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Nobody is perfect, and that can be especially true when it comes to your teeth. Your orthodontist may have given you a retainer that you wore faithfully for a month or two before forgetting to put it in for a while. That is when you might notice some shifting in your mouth. And you might be worried about undoing all of the work your braces have done. Can retainers straighten or realign your teeth?

Retainer Wear and Care

If your dentist has given you a retainer, it’s up to you to properly wear and care for it. Taking care of your retainer and following complete guidelines ensures that it can do its job in helping your teeth maintain their positions. You will need to wear it according to your dentist’s instructions and keep it clean and remove it when you eat.

Can Retainers Straighten Teeth?

It’s important to remember that retainers help teeth hold their position after braces treatment. They don’t exert the same force that braces or aligners do to move teeth. Still, if it’s only been a few days since you forgot to wear your retainer, you shouldn’t panic: simply start wearing it again as soon as possible.

If you have gone weeks or months without wearing your retainer, try it on for size. If it feels too small or uncomfortable, your teeth may have shifted, and you’ll need to talk to your dentist. Your retainer might be able to shift the teeth back if the bone tissue hasn’t already grown and solidified your teeth’s new positions. If you have gone without your retainer for so long that new bone tissue growth has occurred, your orthodontist might suggest braces, clear aligners, or other methods to help straighten your teeth.

If you forget your retainer and it feels tight when you put it back in, check with your dentist for your next plan of action. Contact Angleton Family Dental to schedule an appointment.