After orthodontic treatment has completed, there is a tendency for teeth to return back to their pre-treatment positions. To prevent this, a combination of fixed and removable retainers is used to stabilize the orthodontic treatment outcome.
The fixed retainer is a simple wire that is glued behind the front teeth. It could be placed only on the lower front teeth or both the upper and lower teeth. The patient is not able to remove this type of retainer. Certain tooth movements are best stabilized by this type of retainer.
Removable retainers are fabricated at dental labs. Patients are required to wear them full time except when eating or brushing. The individual retention protocol is case specific and must be adhered to completely for stable results.