We are now located in Aurora at 5001 S. Parker Rd., Suite 201 — on the NW corner of S. Parker Rd. and E. Belleview Ave. in the Point Belleview building.
In some cases, retainers are used to close a gap between teeth or to move just one or two teeth in a specific direction. In these cases, braces usually aren't needed because retainers can do the job. Often, retainers will be worn for several years to close a space or move a tooth and then worn to keep the teeth in place.
Retainers are also used to alleviate problems other than shifting teeth.
For example, some children have tongue thrust (a condition where their tongue sneaks through their teeth when they talk). Crib or tongue-cage retainers are designed with small metal bars that hang down from the roof of the mouth. These retainers keep the tongue from going forward in between teeth when a child speaks. The retainer trains the child's tongue to go to the roof of the mouth instead of through teeth. The length of time a child wears a crib or tongue-cage retainer varies depending on the child and the severity of the problem.
Another use for retainers is to help people with TMD. This disorder is usually a result of a bite problem (the teeth don't meet together properly when the jaws are closed) called malocclusion or bruxism (grinding your teeth while you sleep). Grinding stretches the muscles and joints in the mouth and jaws and sometimes results in jaw pain or headaches. Specially made retainers (often called night guards) can prevent the mouth from closing completely at night, which keeps people from grinding their teeth.