The retention phase of your orthodontic treatment begins once your braces are removed or you have completed treatment with any other orthodontic appliance. Retention focuses on ensuring that your new smile remains as-is both now and for the rest of your life.

  • Maintain your new, healthier and more beautiful smile for life
  • Our orthodontist will map out your retention plan based on your treatment and needs
  • We will explain how you can keep your new smile in the best condition possible



Why You Need Orthodontic Retention


Without proper retention, your teeth could move out of their new positions and require additional treatment



Preventing Tooth Movement

Your teeth have just been moved into their proper positions with your orthodontic treatment. However, the bone around your tooth roots, and the roots themselves, are still susceptible to moving out of place and back into their original positions. With a retention phase, you can ensure that your straight smile stays that way.


Maintaining Good Oral Health

Straight teeth make it easier to maintain good oral health with regular brushing and flossing. By keeping your teeth straight after your orthodontic treatment, you can more easily maintain good oral health throughout your life.



About Retention


The retention phase of your treatment is one that will last a lifetime.



Removing Your Orthodontic Appliance

Once you have completed your allotted treatment time, and your smile is as you want it, our orthodontist will remove any orthodontic appliances, such as braces, that you wore during your treatment.


Receiving Your Retainer

After your braces or other orthodontic appliances are removed, you will be fitted for a retainer. This typically happens during the same appointment. Our team will clean your teeth, take X-rays and scan your mouth or use bite impressions to create a mold for your retainer. We will then use the specifications and impressions to recommend which type of retainer is right for you, and to create it.


Retainers are Forever

Your retention phase typically begins with a six-month period where you wear your retainer all day, every day. During this initial phase, you can remove your retainer to eat as well as brush and floss your teeth. Our orthodontist will inform you how long you need to wear your retainer every day, and how long this initial phase will last. After this initial period, you will need to wear you retainer nightly to help keep your new smile for life.


Retainer Care

It is important to care for your retainer, as you will need it for the rest of your life. You can clean your retainer with a toothbrush and toothpaste or soap, rinsing it in cool water. Avoid using hot water, or keeping your retainer in a hot area, such as on the car dashboard, as this could cause the retainer to warp its shape. When you are not wearing your retainer, keep it safe in its case. If your retainer becomes damaged or lost, our orthodontist can provide you with a new one.



Types of Retainers


We offer several types of retainers to help you maintain your straight smile for life



Hawley Retainers

These retainers are made up of a metal wire framework and clasps that wrap around your teeth. The wires and clasps are attached to a durable plastic body. If your retainer is for the upper jaw, the plastic body covers the roof of the mouth. If your retainer is for the lower jaw, the plastic body lies along the tongue side of the teeth.


Clear Retainers

Clear retainers are made of durable, clear plastic. They are custom-made to match your unique bite. They fit snuggly and comfortably for maximum effectiveness. Clear retainers are more discreet than Hawley retainers, but they can be more easily damaged.


Fixed Retainers

This type of retainer is also known as a permanent retainer or bonded retainer. Fixed retainers are made up of a small piece of wire that is glued to the back side of the front teeth. Typically, fixed retainers are attached to the lower teeth, but they can also be attached to the upper teeth.



Why Should You Choose American Dental?


Expertise you can count on


  • Digital scanning and advanced technology gives you a customized retainer and greater treatment success
  • Our orthodontist will explain every step of your retention phase to ensure that you keep your new smile for life
  • We use high-quality materials to make your retainers more durable and comfortable
  • Family-owned and operated with 20+ years of dental experience

American Dental Associates is pleased to offer retainers and orthodontic retention at 3 of our convenient office locations:

Midway Airport
5342 South Archer Ave.
Chicago, Illinois 60632
Lincoln Park
1610 West Fullerton Ave.
Chicago, Illinois 60614
Palos Heights
13303-A. South Ridgeland Ave.
Palos Heights, Illinois 60463



Jaw Dropping Reviews


Our patients are all smiles


“I forgot I was at the Dentist’s office. The staff up front were very welcoming, helpful and friendly. The decor of the place was very warm and updated with a classy touch.”
– Adam Y, Skokie, IL
“These guys were great! I recommend this facility because of its warmth, professionalism, and fast service.”
– Yvette S, Chicago, IL
“I highly recommend it. They were even kind enough to play music to calm my nerves while performing my tooth extraction.”
– Lorraina M, Chicago, IL