Is It Possible to Get a Permanent Retainer for the Top Teeth?
Oral Health Blog

Is It Possible to Get a Permanent Retainer for the Top Teeth?


Permanent retainers are renowned for their role in maintaining the alignment of teeth after orthodontic treatment. While commonly associated with the bottom teeth, there's curiosity about whether it's possible to get a permanent retainer for the top teeth. In this comprehensive guide, we'll delve into the possibilities and considerations surrounding the placement of permanent retainers on the upper teeth.

1. Understanding Permanent Retainers

  • Fixed and Effective:

    • Permanent retainers are thin wires affixed to the back surfaces of teeth, commonly the bottom front teeth, to stabilize orthodontic results.
  • Preventing Relapse:

    • Their primary purpose is to prevent the relapse of tooth misalignment, ensuring a lasting and straightened smile.

2. Traditional Placement of Permanent Retainers

  • Bottom Teeth Emphasis:

    • Conventionally, permanent retainers are frequently placed on the bottom front teeth due to their susceptibility to relapse and the convenience of wire attachment.
  • Challenges with Upper Teeth:

    • Placing permanent retainers on the top teeth poses challenges due to the intricate anatomy and potential interference with speech and bite.

3. Special Considerations for Upper Teeth Retainers

  • Orthodontist's Evaluation:

    • The decision to place a permanent retainer on the top teeth is contingent on an orthodontist's evaluation of your specific case, including tooth alignment, anatomy, and potential impact on oral function.
  • Speech and Bite Dynamics:

    • Permanent retainers on the upper teeth may influence speech patterns or bite dynamics, necessitating careful consideration by orthodontic professionals.

4. Alternative Retainer Options for Upper Teeth

  • Removable Retainers:

    • Orthodontists often recommend removable retainers for the upper teeth, allowing for ease of cleaning, adjustment, and minimizing potential interference with daily activities.
  • Clear Aligners:

    • In cases where continued alignment is necessary, clear aligners may serve as an alternative solution, providing discreet orthodontic intervention.

5. The Importance of Customization

  • Individualized Treatment Plans:

    • Orthodontic treatment is highly individualized. Recommendations for retainers, whether permanent or removable, are based on the unique aspects of each patient's case.
  • Balancing Aesthetics and Function:

    • Achieving the right balance between maintaining aesthetics and ensuring optimal oral function guides orthodontists in recommending the most suitable retainer options.

6. The Procedure for Permanent Retainer Placement

  • Impressions and Customization:

    • If your orthodontist recommends a permanent retainer for the upper teeth, the procedure involves taking impressions for custom fitting.
  • Bonding Process:

    • The bonding process, using dental cement, secures the thin wire to the back surfaces of the designated upper teeth.

7. Caring for Permanent Retainers on Upper Teeth

  • Diligent Oral Hygiene:

    • Proper oral hygiene practices, including regular brushing and flossing, are crucial for maintaining the effectiveness of permanent retainers on the upper teeth.
  • Professional Check-ups:

    • Regular dental check-ups allow orthodontists to assess the condition of the retainers, make any necessary adjustments, and ensure their continued efficacy.


While permanent retainers are commonly associated with the bottom teeth, the placement of such retainers on the upper teeth is a possibility that depends on individual factors. Orthodontists carefully evaluate each case to determine the most effective and practical retention solution. Whether opting for permanent retainers on the upper teeth or exploring alternative options, the goal remains the same: preserving the results of orthodontic treatment and ensuring a stable, beautifully aligned smile for the long term.

Are you currently using or thinking about using retainer cleaning tablets? It's important to be aware that certain cleaner brands have the potential to cause toxic reactions.

It's crucial to be aware of harmful ingredients hiding in common cleaner brands. One such persulfate, which can pose SERIOUS health risks and is found in almost all leading retainer cleaners brands. Moreover, persulfate's health risks potentially impact respiratory health and skin sensitivities in your family, especially in teens and sensitive individuals. Learn more about the risk of persulfate HERE.



The content in this article is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Always consult with a healthcare provider before making any changes to your health regimen. The author and publisher do not take responsibility for any consequences resulting from the information provided in this article.