16 October 2020

2 mins read

Ask Zenyum: Invisible Braces & Retainers – What’s The Difference?

Invisible braces and retainers practically look the same, so it’s easy to confuse them. Here’s the Zenyum guide to help you distinguish between the two.

invisible braces

The world of dental care is constantly evolving – and with it, so are the dental products on offer. But when some of them look like identical clones of each other, it can be hard to tell them apart. 

Invisible braces and retainers are two such dental devices. Don’t confuse one with the other. Here’s how you can distinguish the two.

What are invisible braces?

Invisible braces are clear plastic aligners that are used to straighten teeth. They do this by gradually applying gentle pressure to move your teeth into their desired position. 

Invisible braces have gained wide popularity over the years due to their subtle appearance, making them suitable for working adults who never got the chance to straighten their teeth earlier in life. 

Unlike metal braces, invisible braces are removable and should be taken out before eating or drinking. They’re also less painful than conventional braces as there are no wires or brackets that could potentially cause small cuts and ulcers. 

Invisible braces combine 3D visualisation, printing, and thermoforming technology to produce a superior solution for teeth straightening. Many companies employ these advanced technologies to produce invisible braces – though at different price points.

What are retainers?

Retainers are an orthodontic device that looks like invisible braces but are used after your treatment.

Instead of moving teeth, as the name suggests, they are meant to retain the position of your teeth after a teeth-straightening treatment. But unlike invisible braces, retainers are only worn at night when you sleep. 

You can get fixed retainers or removable ones. Fixed retainers require less commitment as they’re attached to the surface of the teeth, and can only be professionally removed. 

While removable retainers come with a higher commitment level, they provide unparalleled convenience and aesthetics. 

Why do I need to wear retainers?

It’s absolutely imperative that you wear retainers post orthodontic treatment or you can risk relapse. Many former metal braces wearers neglect their retainers and end up losing the perfect alignment they worked so hard to get. 

Why do my teeth continue to shift you ask? Ligament and fibres attach our teeth to the gums, making sure they’re well rooted in place. During aligner treatment, the pressure exerted by the braces causes these fibres and ligaments to loosen. Once you remove your braces, the bone around the shifted teeth is actually still soft.

Wearing retainers ensures that your teeth don’t shift into the soft bone mass. Teeth also tend to shift away over time, so retainers help keep them in place. 

Make sure that the perfect smile you have worked so hard to achieve remains as is!

Ready to feel the Zenyum difference?

Zenyum Invisible Braces straighten your teeth the safe and professional way.

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Ask Zenyum: Invisible Braces & Retainers – What’s The Difference?