Blog Post

Should you still wear your retainer if it feels tight?


You have finally gotten your braces off! Congratulations and welcome to your new beautiful smile. Wearing your retainer as directed is the absolute best way to make sure your teeth don’t shift or move over time. Here is the thing… just because you are out of braces, does not mean that your orthodontic journey is quite over. Unfortunately, teeth can and will shift as we age. Sometimes it is barely noticeable and other times it can be significant. The good news is that keeping your newly straightened smile in good shape is easy.

We know that getting used to wearing your retainer can take some time. Check out the following information to help you figure out how.

My Retainer Feels Tight

It is common for a retainer to feel tight when you first get it. That pressure is what helps to keep your teeth in place. Retainers are made to be snug so that as you age, your teeth do not move. A tight retainer should not cause any damage to your teeth or gums.

My Retainer Hurts

Just like when you first got your braces on or after they had been tightened, a retainer may take some getting used to. It is possible that a new retainer may feel uncomfortable or maybe even slightly painful. The good news is that any discomfort should be mild and only last a few days. Take an over-the-counter pain reliever if you feel like the discomfort is too much. But be sure to push through till you get used to the retainer. If you stop wearing it because it is uncomfortable, your teeth could shift and require more orthodontic work to correct them.

My Retainer Doesn’t Fit at All

If you can’t fit your retainer over your teeth, do not force it. More than likely, your teeth have moved because you were not wearing the retainer as directed. It is crazy, but it is possible for your teeth to move even after just a couple of days. It is important to wear it as Dr. Jolley has instructed. If you find yourself not being able to put on your retainer, let us know as soon as possible. We can get you fitted for a new one, or figure out how best to keep your teeth from moving more.