Common types

Hawley retainer. This type of retainer is the best-known and the most common. Its structure consists of metal loops anchored on an arch that sits in the palate and is made of acrylic. A more recent and aesthetic version of this device replaces the front metal wire with a clear one called ASTICS.

Essix retainer. Essix is a transparent retainer that fits over the entire arch of teeth. Made of polypropylene or polyvinylchloride (PVC) material, the Essix is a vacuum-formed retainer, or VFR. The manner of its manufacture allows the Essix retainer to favorably sit on the surface of the palate because it does not allow the upper and lower teeth to touch as plastic covers the chewing surfaces of the teeth.

Fixed retainers. Unlike other retainer types, fixed retainers cannot be removed by the patient. They are bonded by wire to the tongue side of the incisors. Some doctors prescribe fixed retainers where active orthodontic treatments have effected great changes in the bite and there is a high risk for reversal of these changes. The downside of fixed retainers is that wearing them over an extended period may lead to tartar build-up or gingivitis due to the difficulty of flossing while wearing these retainers.

Now you can kiss your overbite or underbite goodbye. Have an attractive smile that’s truly remarkable from an expert’s perspective. Call us in Wilbraham today at (413) 596-9657 or use our online Request an Appointment form. Our patients come to us from the Pioneer Valley (Hampden County, MA) towns of Hampden, Ludlow, Monson, Palmer, Springfield, Wilbraham and East Longmeadow, Massachusetts.