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Maintaining the idea smile achieved by Dr. Bryan Brassington, Dr. Curt Wiltshire, or Dr. Kevin Bibona and your braces will require the use of a retainer. If you fail to wear your retainer during the prescribed times, or some part of it is bent or damaged, your teeth could slowly come out of their ideal alignment.

A Hawley-style retainer is the most common type of retainer that Dr. Bryan Brassington, Dr. Curt Wiltshire, or Dr. Kevin Bibona prescribes for people that have just had their braces removed. This is a thin molded piece of acrylic that can be removed from your mouth. While you are wearing it, the Hawley retainer is locked in place by sturdy wires.

While the retainer is in your mouth, you can drink and speak normally. However, you will need to take it out when you are eating. This prevents food particles from getting trapped under the retainer and keeps it safe from being bent or damaged when eating hard foods.

When you’re not wearing the retainer, you should always keep your retainer in its case. It’s best to get in the habit of keeping the case with you at all times. Keeping it in a napkin or plastic bag should only be seen as a last resort.

To refresh your retainer, you can soak it in a mixture of one-half antiseptic mouthwash and one-half cold water. If you notice a little plaque on the retainer or the wires, you can lightly brush it with a soft bristled toothbrush and nonabrasive toothpaste.

If you have questions about how to clean and maintain your new Hawley retainer, you can always call Dr. Bryan Brassington, Dr. Curt Wiltshire, or Dr. Kevin Bibona’s office in Richmond, Virginia at 804-740-7281 to ask a question.