A lot of questions can come up when orthodontic treatment is new and it’s important to talk about these questions to know that you’re not alone. Many patients worry, “Will a retainer affect how I talk?” We’ve got the answers so you can get through each stage of orthodontic treatment with confidence.
Why Wear a Retainer?
Before we answer your questions about what it’s like to wear a retainer, let’s talk about what a retainer is and why your orthodontist may recommend a retainer for you.
A retainer is an orthodontic appliance that is worn after your braces are removed to help prevent your teeth from shifting back into place. This is important for the first several months after you get your braces off as your teeth get used to their new positions.
What Does it Feel Like to Wear a Retainer?
How it feels to wear a retainer can depend a lot on the type of retainer that you get. Generally, there are two types of retainers:
Fixed, or permanent, retainers are made with a small wire and fixed into place with special dental glue, like braces. However, fixed retainers don’t require brackets or bands to move your teeth, so they are smaller and more comfortable than braces. Fixed retainers fit on the inside of your teeth where your tongue rests, so they won’t be seen when you smile, but you may notice that you can feel it with your tongue from time to time.
Removable retainers are made from a thin plastic material that is custom-molded to the top or bottom of your mouth where it will rest. If you’re wondering, “Will a retainer affect how I talk?” this is probably the type you’re asking about. It can feel a little funny to have something sitting against the roof of your mouth at first. Initially, it can take some getting used to, but our patients typically adjust very quickly, so if it feels strange to talk at the beginning, it’s nothing to worry about. Just keep practicing and soon you’ll forget it’s there!
Talk with Your Orthodontist
If you have more concerns like, “Will a retainer affect how I talk?” don’t be afraid to tell your orthodontist! Your orthodontist has seen countless patients through every step of the orthodontic journey and will be happy to answer your questions so you can feel confident and comfortable throughout every step of your orthodontic treatment.
Call our Melissa Dental Office to make an appointment with a dentist who may be able to help you find out more about this topic, and improve your oral health.