How to Preserve Your Smile With Customized Retainers

So, you sought out and utilized the services of the best orthodontist in Albany (or any of our other locations) and have achieved your ideal smile at the end of your orthodontic treatment! Now that your teeth are aligned, the next step is getting fitted for a retainer to ensure that your perfect smile lasts for a lifetime.

Read on to find out more about how long customized retainers last, how much they cost, and what type of retainer will work best for you.

Maintain Your Smile Forever with a Retainer

Three main types of customized retainers are available to you:

  • Essix – The Essix retainer lasts 18 months and is made of transparent plastic. Worn at night, this is the most common type of retainer.
  • Hawley – The Hawley retainer is made of metal and is only issued specifically by a doctor recommendation or patient choice. This type of retainer is also worn at night.
  • Lingual – Worn at all times, a lingual retainer consists of a thin piece of wire placed on the back of the teeth. It should be replaced every three to five years.

Since a lingual retainer is glued to the back of the teeth, it’s virtually impossible to misplace. However, if you prefer to only wear a retainer at night, the Essix or Hawley retainer may work best for you.

Ask About Our Smile Protection Program

Retainers can get damaged or lost, but even if you always keep perfect track of your retainer, it will need to be replaced eventually. Fortunately, our Smile Protection Program will help you save money on all the replacement retainers you will need. With our program, you will pay an initial fee, and then replacement retainers will cost a fraction of the usual price and will be shipped directly to your home. Find out more details about our program by visiting the retainers page on our website!

If you want to enroll in our program or if you have more questions about customized retainers in general, be sure to contact us. Voted the best orthodontist in the Capital Region, our team is ready to show you exactly how easy we make it to sit back, relax, and enjoy your new smile.

Simplify Cavity Prevention with Invisalign

Proper oral hygiene is necessary no matter your orthodontic solution, however, there is a treatment that makes keeping up with your hygiene a bit easier: Invisalign. Invisalign involves a series of clear plastic aligners custom-made to fit your teeth and gradually move them into position. The aligners can be taken off as needed, whether you are taking photos for a special event, eating a meal, or brushing and flossing! 

Whether you decide to pursue traditional braces or cutting-edge Invisalign, read these tips for preventing cavities and caring for your teeth throughout your treatment with our expert orthodontists in Albany and the rest of the Capital Region.

Brush After Every Meal

Regardless of your orthodontic treatment method, it is essential to maintain consistency when brushing your teeth. While it may be an adjustment learning how to brush around your braces, your effort will pay off in cavity prevention! If you are looking for a way to make dental hygiene easier to keep up with, consider Invisalign, as your aligners can be removed, allowing you to brush your teeth with no obstacles. 

We recommend brushing your teeth after you finish eating. Your toothbrush should be small and flexible, able to navigate around your braces. For best results, brush using the following technique:

  • Use a circular motion to brush the teeth, focusing on the outside and inside of your teeth.
  • Spend time brushing the crowns of your teeth, where you chew your food.
  • Be sure to brush around all wire brackets to remove food particles.
  • Don’t forget to brush your gums, tongue, and cheeks.
  • Rinse and spit as needed.
  • Brush for a minimum of two minutes.

Floss At Least Once a Day

Flossing with braces doesn’t have to be as tricky as it might seem. A water pick can make flossing a breeze, but even without one, you can properly floss your teeth. If you have traditional floss, take enough of it out to wrap around each index finger. Use floss threaders or move the floss by hand under the wires to get between the teeth, and floss using a “C” motion.

Even with all the tricks mentioned above, many people find that flossing with Invisalign is easier, as you can simply remove your aligners and floss your teeth normally. No matter which orthodontic treatment you choose, however, you’ll come to find that as your teeth are brought into alignment, it becomes easier to floss between them. 

In addition to flossing daily, we recommend bringing floss wherever you go in case you need to remove something from your teeth or brackets when you’re not at home.

The Benefits of Treatment with Adirondack Orthodontics

In addition to helping you achieve your ideal smile, braces bring you to our office for routine visits. Our Albany orthodontists will examine your teeth during these appointments, adjusting your braces and monitoring the health of your teeth. We will be able to identify any issues, like developing cavities, before they get worse. However, the proper brushing and flossing techniques will keep your teeth in great shape and save you from needing any fillings. 

If you need more information on the proper care methods, don’t hesitate to contact us or ask during your next appointment at Adirondack Orthodontics! Still haven’t started your journey to your ideal smile? Set up a consultation to get braces in Albany or any of our other Capital Region locations today! 

Happy Dental Hygiene Month!

Tips on Proper Dental Care

Dental hygiene is essential for keeping your teeth, gums, and mouth healthy, especially when you’re undergoing orthodontic treatment. October is Dental Hygiene Month, and we want to remind all our patients about the importance of proper teeth care, whether they have braces or aligners.

Take a look below at some tips on caring for your teeth, gums, braces, and aligners. In addition, learn more about maintaining a happy, healthy smile, and get in touch with our team if you have any questions about your dental hygiene! 

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How to Care for Your Teeth & Braces

If you have braces, you should be flossing once a day and brushing your teeth after every meal. Remember to brush the outside, inside, and crowns of your teeth in a circular motion, paying particular attention to the brackets on your teeth. You should also brush your gums, tongue, and cheeks. When flossing, remember to use a “C” shape to get all the areas around your gums. Floss threaders can help you get around wires and brackets, and rinsing your mouth can help loosen food particles.

The kit we provided for you at the start of your treatment should help, but we always welcome the chance to discuss what tools work best for taking care of your teeth when you have braces. Feel free to reach out to our team with any additional questions you may have! 

How to Care for Your Aligners

Unlike braces, aligners can be taken off for eating, drinking, and brushing your teeth. Even though you remove your aligners for these activities, you need to care for your aligners to ensure they last and to protect the health of your teeth and gums. We recommend gently brushing your aligners using toothpaste and cool water every time you remove them. And, of course, you should be brushing and flossing your teeth as recommended above.

Get in touch with our team today

Adirondack Orthodontics and Your Dental Hygiene

At Adirondack Orthodontics, we want to help our patients achieve and preserve straight, healthy smiles for a lifetime. Keeping these dental care tips in mind during and after your treatment will help you reach the smile of your dreams! If you have any further questions about oral hygiene techniques, please call or text your nearest location, or request an appointment here.

Retainers 101

How to Protect Your Smile Forever

Once you’ve achieved the smile of your dreams, you’ll want to make sure you can keep it! Brushing and flossing have always been on your daily to-do list, but after finishing your orthodontic treatment, you’ll have something to add to that list: wearing your retainer. Essential for keeping your teeth in the same position, your retainer will be customized to fit your mouth perfectly. Learn more about your options and how Adirondack Orthodontics makes smile protection easy below.

Essix Retainer

Clear and plastic, the Essix retainer resembles Invisalign and is the most common type of retainer. Typically more comfortable than other retainers, the Essix retainer lasts roughly 18 months and should be worn at night. After you finish your orthodontic treatment, we will take a scan of your teeth, and your new retainer will be ready within a few days. This is the type of retainer that we give you at the end of your orthodontic treatment and with the Smile Protection Program.

Hawley Retainer

The Hawley retainer is a classic metal retainer with a colorful bite plate. Less common than the Essix retainer, this type of retainer is issued specifically by doctor recommendation or patient choice. As with the Essix retainer, we will take a scan of your teeth after you finish treatment, and your retainer will be ready within a few days.

Lingual Retainer

A lingual retainer is a thin piece of wire which is glued to the back of the teeth to preserve alignment during the day. Often suggested for patients with crowding or spacing issues, this type of retainer should be combined with the Essix retainer at night and is the best guarantee for long-term retention. These require maintenance or replacement every three to five years.

Smile Protection Program 

Make sure you protect your investment in your smile with a retainer. Since retainers typically require replacement after 18 months, your team at Adirondack Orthodontics has a solution to help you maintain your smile: our Smile Protection Program. There are several options you can choose from to get the smile protection that works for you:

Smile Protection Plan Enrollment: $600*

After you enroll, replacement retainers will cost $35/arch and can be shipped to your home! Enhance and protect your smile with our Smile Protection Program plus a bleaching kit for $650. 

Second Set of Retainers: $200*

(Your first set is included in the treatment fee.)

Bleaching Kit: $100*

Your bleaching kit can be used with retainers. 

Sit Back & Enjoy Your New Smile

Keep the smile that you achieved with help from Adirondack Orthodontics! Whether you need our help replacing a broken retainer or you want to take part in our Smile Protection Program, we will help you protect your investment. Call us today to learn more.

*Terms: As long as patients wear their retainers as prescribed, replacements can just be shipped directly to the patient’s home, no office visit needed. If a patient has not worn retainers properly, requiring a rescan, a $100 rescan fee will be charged. Retainer lifetime: Approximately 18 months.

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