Do you know what comes after your aligners journey with BASMA? You probably guessed it: retainers. Learn about the two types of retainers and which one we recommend to help preserve your new smile for life.


But first, what are retainers?

Retainers are orthodontic devices that you wear right after an aligner or braces treatment. Their job is to prevent your straight teeth from shifting back to their old position. During treatment, aligners and braces exert pressure on the ligaments and fibers that attach teeth to the gums. This causes the bones around your teeth to become loose and soft after treatment ends. Retainers will prevent that soft bone structure from moving out of place. But that’s not all; teeth naturally shift positions over time – so retainers will help keep them in place for many years to come!

Now that we’ve covered what retainers are, let’s move on to what kinds they come in.


Fixed retainers

Made of metal wire, fixed retainers are glued permanently to the surface of your teeth to prevent them from shifting back to their old position. Here are the pros and cons of getting fixed retainers.

  • Since fixed retainers are permanently glued to your teeth, you can be sure to never lose them.
    This can be especially convenient for people with busy schedules.


  • Fixed retainers are hard to break or damage during everyday activities.
    That’s because they’re made of medical-grade metal wire and a strong bonding material.


  • They’re not visible to anyone but you.
    Fixed retainers are attached to the back of your upper and bottom teeth, guaranteeing full discretion.


  • It can take up to an hour to attach fixed retainers to your teeth.
    This makes the procedure feel unpleasant and long.


  • They can affect your oral hygiene.
    You need extra effort to brush around fixed retainers. If not done properly, this can increase the risks of plaque buildup, gum disease and cavities.


  • Biting into hard foods can bend the wire out of shape.
    Sugary foods and soda, when consumed excessively, can also weaken the bonding material attaching the wire to your teeth.


  • The metal wire can irritate your tongue.
    Rubbing your tongue against a metal wire all the time may cause discomfort.


  • Fixed retainers on the upper teeth almost always break off after a few years.
    This will cause your straight teeth to move out of place. But that’s not all. Improper care in general will cost a visit to the orthodontist who will replace the retainers with new ones.



Removable retainers (recommended)

Unlike fixed retainers, removable retainers look almost identical to invisible aligners! They’re also made of clear elastic plastic, and 3D-printed to fit the shape of your straight teeth perfectly. Here’s why BASMA recommends this type of retainer for post-treatment care:

  • You can take them off anytime, and anywhere, to eat and brush your teeth.
    This gives you a well-deserved opportunity to be retainer-free. But don’t go too long without them!


  • They’re better for your oral hygiene.
    Because they’re removable, you can easily clean and floss your teeth without worrying about increased risks of cavities, plaque buildup, and gum disease.


  • They’re easy to clean.
    Removable retainers are cleaned with a toothbrush and some toothpaste in the morning and before bed. You can also rinse them with some cool water throughout the day. This prevents any bacteria from building up on your retainers over time!


  • They’re comfortable and safe to wear.
    Retainers are designed to have smooth edges that fit comfortably over your gum line without causing any irritation or blisters.


  • They offer more precise care.
    Just like aligners, retainers are printed to the exact shape of your teeth. This guarantees a more targeted effect to keep your new smile in place.


  • You don’t have to keep them on for 24 hours a day forever.
    You’ll need to wear your retainers throughout the day for the first 2 months. After that, you can keep them on for 8 hours a night only.

Ready to start?

Find out if you’re a candidate for invisible aligners today!

Take a 20-second survey