What Happens if I Stop Wearing My Retainer?

Retainers play a vital role in maintaining the results of your orthodontic work, and neglecting them can lead to setbacks. Common complications associated with not wearing your retainers as directed can include:

  1. Shifting Teeth: One of the most common consequences of not wearing retainers is the shifting of teeth. Our teeth have a natural tendency to move back to their original positions. Retainers help stabilize your teeth in their new alignment, preventing them from reverting to their old positions.
  2. Reversal of Orthodontic Progress: After years of orthodontic work, the last thing you want is to undo all that effort. Skipping retainers can result in a regression of your beautifully aligned smile, necessitating further orthodontic treatment.
  3. Bite Problems: Irregularities in your bite can also occur if you neglect to wear your retainers. This can lead to discomfort, difficulty in chewing, and even jaw pain. Retainers are essential for maintaining the balance and function of your bite.

While retainers are an important part of the orthodontic treatment process, Coronado dentist Jason Keckley, DMD acknowledges that some patients struggle to wear them as directed. Fortunately, he offers multiple potential solutions for patients experiencing orthodontic relapse as a result of not wearing their retainers, including:


ClearCorrect™ is a popular clear aligner system that can help realign your teeth without the need for traditional braces. The discreet, clear aligners can gradually bring your teeth back to their desired positions, restoring a straighter smile. Plus, since the aligners are designed to be removed while eating, drinking, and attending to your oral hygiene, they can provide greater comfort and convenience for patients.

Porcelain Veneers

Porcelain veneers offer a cosmetic solution to misaligned or shifted teeth. While they don’t address the root cause of the issue like braces or ClearCorrect™, veneers can provide an efficient and aesthetically-pleasing fix for the appearance of your smile. These custom-made, thin shells of porcelain are bonded to the fronts and sides of your teeth, covering a variety of tooth imperfections and disguising the appearance of minor misalignment..

Ultimately, the best way to retain your straighter smile after orthodontic treatment is to wear your retainer as directed. However, for those whose teeth have shifted out of alignment due to orthodontic relapse, Dr. Keckley offers solutions that can help restore your smile and bite. Contact Coronado Classic Dentistry today to schedule an appointment.

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