How can my child prepare for getting a wire dental retainer?

Wearing a wire dental retainer is less noticeable than wearing braces, so your child will probably be excited not to have metal showing when smiling or talking. Wire dental retainers are placed on the lingual, or tongue-side of the teeth, and barely show. They’re also permanent, unlike the retainers that need to be removed when eating and can easily get lost.

To make a wire dental retainer, the orthodontist usually glues a thin piece of twisted wire on the backs of the teeth. The orthodontist might recommend that your child get a professional teeth cleaning after the braces are removed, or he or she may clean the affected teeth before gluing in the wire. Clean teeth are important because plaque trapped under the cement can cause tooth decay, and in addition, the teeth need to be clean for the cement to stick properly. Some orthodontists use dental cements that can decrease the amount of bacteria in plaque.

Ask your orthodontist or dentist for specific instructions on how to best prepare your child for a wire dental retainer.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.