Let’s Get This Straight: Q&A About Retainers


Hooray – the time has come, your child’s braces are coming off! No more needing to avoid certain foods or use special tools for cleaning, but neither of you are out of the woods just yet. 

Children’s teeth continue to grow and shift into adulthood, which is why there is a crucial second step to keeping their smiles perfect – retainers. Here are some answers to the most common retainer questions. 

1. Why Does My Child Have To Wear A Retainer?
Nothing is permanent in orthodontics! We help align the teeth but they can move after braces come off – defeating the purpose of all that hard work! Consistent retainer use will help keep their teeth straight and keep you from coming back for braces for a second time – phew!

2. What Kind Of Retainer Will They Get? 
There are multiple kinds of retainers – fixed and removable, which will be chosen based off which one is best for your child’s individual needs. BONUS: they can customize their removable retainers with different colors – how fun!

3. How Long Will My Child Have To Wear A Retainer? 
Typically, the first six months after braces are removed, retainers should be worn every day. Over time, the teeth will stabilize and your child can wear their retainer more infrequently…delivering that news will be a good day!

4. How Can I Help My Child Care For Their Retainer?
First, always make sure your child is carrying the plastic case made to hold their retainer. When they are eating at school or on a playdate you want to make sure that when they take off their retainer, it is in a safe place and doesn’t contract germs. Your child should remove their retainer before brushing in the morning and at night and brush their retainer before placing it back in their mouth. Give us a call if you have any cleaning questions.

5. Will A Retainer Hurt Them? 
Each retainer is custom fit to a child’s mouth. If they continuously wear it when they are supposed to, it should fit comfortably and not hurt. If your child strays away from consistent use of their retainer, their teeth will shift and the retainer will feel tight in their mouth. Help them to remember they can avoid any discomfort and keep their beautiful smile if they consistently wear their retainer.

Have any other questions or concerns regarding your child’s orthodontic health – give our offices a call!

At Adelberg Montalvan Pediatric Dental and Orthodontics, our purpose is to provide exceptional mental and dental care that can impact your child’s life forever. Our practice has been providing excellent pediatric dentistry to children of Long Island for over 14 years. We have three locations: Nesconset, Massapequa Park, and West Islip.