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Each of your adjustment sessions at Dr. Claudia Torok’s Los Angeles, California orthodontic clinic, was critical for realigning your teeth. Every time your braces were tightened, it moved your teeth one step closer to their ideal alignment. Even after your braces have been removed, some of this tension will still linger in the dental sockets that anchor your teeth in your mouth.

To prevent this from altering the new position of your teeth Dr. Claudia Torok will fit you for a Hawley retainer. This is a thin, tongue-shaped piece of acrylic, custom fit to the shape of your mouth. It is removable, yet locks in place by a series of wires that lock with specific teeth. You should expect that you’ll need to use the retainer for about the same amount of time it took for the braces to realign your teeth.

If any part of your retainers is bent or damaged, or you fail to wear it during the prescribed times, it will likely increase the amount of time it’s needed. You should always keep your Hawley retainer in its case when you are not wearing it. Try to get in the habit of keeping the case with you, rather than improvise with something like a napkin or a plastic bag.

You can refresh the Hawley retainer by soaking it in a mixture of antiseptic mouthwash and cold water. It’s also important to brush the retainer each evening with a soft bristled toothbrush and nonabrasive toothpaste. This will refresh it, while also removing any residual plaque.

Any alteration in the Hawley retainer reduces it effectiveness. If any part of your retainer is bent, damaged or suffering from some extra wear and tear, you should contact Dr. Claudia Torok’s clinic to have it repaired.

If you have questions about how to clean and maintain your new Hawley-style retainer, you can always call 310-670-5686 to speak with a member of Dr. Claudia Torok’s staff at his Los Angeles, California orthodontic clinic.