Can a Dental Retainer Fix a Gap? Orthodontics Treatment
Retainers have been designed to be used as an end of treatment to help retain your teeth in their new position. They have the strength and function to hold the teeth where they finally rest, but they do not possess the function to actively move the teeth into a straight position.
We offer two kinds of retainers to be used in conjunction with each other for all of our braces patients. These are removable and fixed retainers. The reason why retailers can’t be used to close a gap is that they are fitted at the end of treatment and are made to fit the straight teeth mold. If they were done while you had a gap they would be made to fit your teeth in that specific way and would therefore not move them but just hold them how they are.
When you have your braces debonded we will fit the fixed retainer at the backs of your teeth which will offer you immediate retention for when your braces are off. We then take impressions of your teeth to then make the removable retainers to fit the exact time frame that your teeth were straight. These take 10-14 days to be made at our dental lab and are then given to the patient to be worn at night. This double up on retention helps protect your investment in straightening your teeth.
Causes of Tooth Gaps
While this doesn’t happen to everyone, it is always a possibility for several reasons. These include a non-fitting retainer, not wearing your retainer when necessary, genetic predisposition to misaligned teeth, daily teeth grinding, or teeth movement after your prescribed retainer use is over. If there starts to be noticeable shifting, you may wonder whether or not another round of orthodontic treatment is necessary. Given that treatment can take a fairly long time (anywhere from 6 to 12 months).