Which Retainer Is the Best?

Braces vs Invisalign: How to Keep Your Braces Clean

Whether you had extensive orthodontic treatment or only partial treatment, you’ll need a retainer once your braces treatment is finished. Retainers prevent your teeth from shifting back to their original positions after removing your braces.



Permanent (fixed lingual retainer), clear plastic, and Hawley retainers are all options. These retainers serve the same purpose; however, like any other product or appliance, each type of retainer has advantages and disadvantages. Let’s look at these three types of retainers in more detail below.



A wire is bonded to the back of the teeth to form a permanent retainer. A permanent retainer may be a good option if your teeth were rotated, had a lot of space between them, or were crowded before treatment.


  • You won’t have to consider putting this retainer in or taking it out because it is bonded to your teeth.
  • You are unlikely to harm it.
  • It is unbreakable.
  • It’s not visible.
  • Most people believe that permanent retainers are more comfortable than removable retainers.


  • Food particles may become entangled in the wire, so brushing after meals is critical.
  • Floss threaders are required. These allow you to floss between your teeth and your retainer.
  • Some tooth movement is possible; however, any movement is minimal.
  • Brushing and flossing are essential for preventing plaque buildup.



Because they are thin, clear, and fit securely over the teeth, these retainers resemble Invisalign trays.


  • No one knows you’re wearing a retainer because it’s nearly invisible.
  • These retainers are comfortable to wear because they are custom-fit to each tooth.
  • For cleaning and eating, clear retainers are removed.
  • The clear retainer prevents teeth from shifting the best by moulding the retainer to fit each tooth perfectly.


  • These clear retainers cost more than traditional Hawley retainers.
  • These retainers are not recommended for people who play contact sports or grind their teeth because they are not as durable as their traditional counterparts.
  • Cleaning a clear plastic retainer with toothpaste can harm the material.
  • Due to normal wear and tear, you may require a new retainer over time.


When you think of a retainer, you probably think of the Hawley retainer. These retainers are made of acrylic and are moulded to fit the inside of the mouth’s roof or floor. To keep the retainer in place, metal wires wrap around your teeth. These retainers can be removed.


  • Hawley retainers can last a long time if properly cared for.
  • These retainers are long-lasting, stain-resistant, somewhat adjustable, and simple to clean.
  • It can be removed before eating, brushing, and flossing.
  • Hawley retainers come in a variety of colours.
  • Use a toothbrush and toothpaste or denture cleaner to clean your retainer.


  • These retainers will be quickly worn down by people who grind their teeth.
  • Talking and swallowing can be difficult while wearing these retainers.
  • It can be costly to lose your retainer.
  • This retainer’s metal wire is visible.
  • While wearing this retainer, you may produce more saliva than usual.
  • Bacteria can build up in your retainer if you don’t clean it properly.

Your orthodontist will review your retainer options and determine which type is best for you. After removing your braces, you must wear your retainer as your orthodontist prescribes. Otherwise, your teeth will most likely shift over time.