Maintaining Straight Teeth for the Long-Term After Your Braces Treatment

You will eagerly approach the end of the process of straightening your teeth with braces so that you can feel confident to flash your uniquely perfect smile without worrying about eating certain foods and the challenges of cleaning your teeth.

Accelerdent and Interproximal Reductions

For simple cases, this might only take a year–if you have a very crooked bite, this could take up to three years. However, Dr. Song can utilize two dental technologies to speed up the process where appropriate, Accelerdent and Interproximal Reductions.

However, it is very important to know that after treatment, you need to wear retainers, which are removable mouthpieces made primarily of biocompatible acrylic, attached by elastics, to keep the straightened teeth from reverting to their crooked positions.

The Final Phase of Treatment is Important

Your mouth is dynamic and always changing and orthodontists like Dr. Song know this final phase of treatment is just as important as when you wore braces. Fortunately, it usually takes just 3-6 months to be completed, as described in these instructions.


Your retainer will be custom-made of a durable, but thin material so that it can fit into your mouth comfortably for 20-22 hours a day. Sometimes it takes a few days to adjust to the feel and to speak clearly.


But the thinness also means that it or the elastics can break if you do not treat them gently. If this happens, you will need to see Dr. Song ASAP to repair it (do not try to do this yourself, which can cause damage that cannot be fixed). Any delay can allow the teeth to start reverting to their original positions. If you fly, be sure to bring them in your carry-on bag, not leave them in luggage where they might be crushed. Also, avoid exposing the retainer to high temperatures, which could melt or warp it.

Oral Hygiene Remains Essential

You will be delighted to know that retainers and the elastics can be removed when you eat, brush your teeth, and floss, so you don’t have to worry nearly as much about cleaning your teeth and gums.


However, you should clean your retainer daily to remove the sticky plaque that bacteria naturally create in your mouth: rinse and brush it with a soft-bristled toothbrush then store it in when you are not wearing it somewhere that is cool or room temperature. 


If you have questions about your retainer, do not be afraid to ask Dr. Song: she is eager to help every patient undergoing the braces-retainer process until they are fully ready to share their gleaming new smile.