At Children’s Dental Center, the health of your child’s teeth is a top priority for our team. You may be wondering how we can keep their teeth in place once they are in the perfect position. With the power of retainers, your child can maintain their work and enjoy a beautiful smile for a lifetime. Our expert team of dentists, Dr. Rowland, Dr. Selecman, Dr. Daniel, Dr. Greene, and Dr. Church, are here to share everything you want to know about retainers, such as why they should be worn, the types available, and how long they need to be worn for. 

The Basics of Retainers

Once you complete your treatment, you will want your child’s time and effort to last a lifetime. So, we utilize the power of retainers! They are an essential tool in dentistry to keep your child’s teeth in place and help their smile maintain perfect alignment. Retainers are customized appliances designed to fit perfectly inside their mouth according to their current positioning, thanks to digital impressions and other technological advancements.

Retainers are crafted from metal, plastic, or a combination of the two. No matter which type your child receives, you can count on it getting the job done! Innovations have allowed us increasingly precise models to craft retainers from, making them more comfortable and stronger than ever.

How Long Do You Need To Wear Them For?

Teeth are not rooted in cement, so they constantly make minute shifts, even if we don’t notice them initially. Retainers slow down the process and keep teeth in place so they don’t relocate out of the perfect position the end of treatment left them in. Especially during the initial phase of your child wearing this appliance, it is essential they follow our doctor’s suggestions. 

They typically suggest wearing it all day and night for the first three to six months, depending on your child’s needs. After that, they can transition to nightly use after their teeth have adjusted to their new alignment. Our team will share the details of your specific schedule during follow-up appointments. 

What Kinds of Retainer Are Available?

At Children’s Dental Center, we provide two kinds of retainers for our patients: fixed and removable. Depending on which of your child’s teeth needs more help staying in place and what dentists deem necessary, they may get a combination of these two types. As they get to know your child’s teeth, they can provide you with their expert opinion on what will work best.


Bonded to the inner surface of your teeth, fixed retainers are a discreet, effective option after treatment. They consist of a thin, curved wire glued flush inside your mouth with dental cement. Fixed retainers typically only attach to your child’s front four to six teeth, as those are most prone to shifting. 

This permanent appliance can last for years when cleaned and cared for properly. There is no time limit for how long your child’s retainer can be in their mouth, so there is you won’t have to worry about getting it removed at any point in the future.


When you envision retainers, a removable one is likely the kind you will recognize. They typically have a clear plastic base with a thin metal wire lining where your teeth fit, while others may look similar to clear aligners. As mentioned, both are customized to your child’s final teeth alignment. 

They must be removed before eating to ensure the appliance does not suffer any additional pressure it is not made to withstand. Should it break or bend out of place, please give our office a call so we can provide you with a replacement as soon as possible. 

Remind your child to thoroughly clean their teeth before placing their retainer back in to remove any lingering pieces of food stuck in their mouth. It is also important to clean the retainer each night during an end-of-the-day brushing routine.

Why Do I Need To Wear A Retainer?

Why Wear Your Retainer? 

Keeping to the unique retainer schedule provided by our dentists is very important to ensure your child can enjoy their smile for many years to come. Establishing a routine to remember is recommended. Our team is happy to share any tips to make this possible.

Time For Your Tissue and Gums to Settle

The tissue around your child’s gums and teeth needs time to establish and stay in place as their teeth settle into their final position. A retainer provides this stability as it adapts and allows their smile to conform smoothly! This way, their teeth are able to gradually get used to their new position with minimal discomfort to them in the process.

Prevent Teeth Relapse

Especially early on, reminding your child to keep their retainer on as prescribed will keep their teeth in an ideal position while they are most likely to shift back into their original placement. It prevents minor adjustments from happening you may not notice right away. The better they stick to a schedule early on, the smoother a transition you can expect as their teeth adapt.

Don’t Forget To Attend Your Follow-Up Appointments

Even after completing treatment, our team asks that you continue to schedule follow-up appointments so we can ensure everything is going as planned. Your subsequent check-ins will be less frequent, making them more important to attend as they are intentionally spaced out for our dentists to promptly bring any issues to your attention and keep your child’s teeth healthy! 

This is also a great time to ask any questions about your retainer, treatment plan, or how to keep your child’s teeth in excellent shape in the coming years. We love our curious patients!

Why Do I Need To Wear A Retainer?

Keep Your Child’s Teeth Healthy!

We hope we answered your questions about retainers and how they work. If there is anything else you are wondering about or want clarification on, please contact our front desk; we will be happy to assist. Request an appointment with any of our incredible dentists today, and our team will help your child begin treatment!