Problems That Can Result From Leaving A Retainer In Your Mouth Too Long

Dentist Blog

If your child has just received a dental retainer after a period of wearing braces or perhaps even as an alternative to braces, the orthodontist will likely caution him or her about keeping this device inside of the mouth as much as possible. Some children can have a tendency to remove their retainers a lot, which can often lead to them getting broken — which not only represents an expense, but also slows down the orthodontic process while another retainer is made. There are problems, however, associated with leaving the retainer in the child's mouth for too long. Ideally, he or she will strike a good balance — wearing the retainer all day, but removing it to clean thorough. Here are some issues that may arise when you child doesn't regularly remove the retainer.

Growth Of Bacteria

The retainer is in constant contact with saliva and food, which means that it will be covered in bacteria. Cleaning it regularly will reduce the amount of bacteria on its surface, but if your child leaves the retainer in his or her mouth, this orthodontic device can become a haven for bacteria. This can be problematic because the more bacteria that are in the mouth, the higher risk there are of cavities and gum disease. By removing and cleaning the retainer, your child immediately makes his or her mouth healthier.

Emergence Of Bad Breath

Children, especially in their teenage years, are often conscious about things such as bad breath — especially if another child at school points out this issue. It's important for your child to know that if he or she leaves the retainer in, the bacteria growth on the device will soon cause it to smell badly. This can result in your child having bad breath, which may frequently make him or her feel embarrassed. Don't be afraid to consult the orthodontist for advice about properly cleaning the retainer, as well as to learn how often your child should remove it.

Challenges With Brushing

A child should remove his or her retainer before brushing, but if your child is in the habit of leaving this device in, brushing will be difficult. The presence of a retainer prevents your child from brushing his or her teeth thoroughly. The device's wire covers part of the teeth, which makes it difficult to get the teeth fully cleaned. Over time, this could mean that your child is at a higher risk of developing a cavity. When the child removes the retainer for brushing, he or she can do a meticulous job.

Speak to a local dentist to learn more.


20 February 2019

Improving My Dental Appointments

After dealing with a few root canals, I realized that it was time to take my dental hygiene a more seriously. I talked with my dentist about what I could do differently, and he was full of great suggestions that would help. He walked me through different ways to brush, floss, and take care of tartar buildup, and it was really amazing to see the difference that it made. I also started taking a fluoride supplement to strengthen my enamel. When I made it to my next appointment, my dentist was blown away with the improvement. This blog is all about improving your dental appointments by keeping your teeth healthier.