To Retain or Not to Retain: The Pros and Cons of Daily Wear
Oral Health Blog

To Retain or Not to Retain: The Pros and Cons of Daily Wear


Retainers are an essential part of orthodontic treatment, but there's often confusion about how often they should be worn. In this article, we'll address the question of whether it's good to wear your retainer every day and explore other crucial aspects, such as insurance coverage, types of retainers, and their effects.

Is It Good to Wear Your Retainer Every Day?

Wearing your retainer every day is generally advisable for maintaining orthodontic results.

Points to consider:

  • Consistent daily wear helps keep teeth in their corrected positions and prevents shifting.
  • Skipping retainer use can lead to gradual misalignment and may require additional orthodontic treatment.
  • Follow your orthodontist's recommendations for retainer wear, which typically involve daily use, especially initially.

Does Insurance Cover Retainers?

Insurance coverage for retainers varies based on your plan and provider.

Points to consider:

  • Some dental insurance plans may partially cover the cost of retainers, especially if they are considered medically necessary.
  • Review your insurance policy to understand the extent of coverage for orthodontic appliances like retainers.
  • Consult with your orthodontist to explore financing options if your insurance does not cover retainers.

Which Type of Retainer Is Best?

The best type of retainer depends on individual needs and preferences.

Points to consider:

  • Hawley retainers consist of a wire framework and acrylic material, offering durability and customizability with various designs and colors.
  • Clear retainers, such as Invisalign, are virtually invisible and discreet, making them a popular choice among those who prefer a subtle option.
  • The choice of retainer type should align with the recommendations of your orthodontist and your personal comfort.

What Are the Negative Effects of Retainers?

Retainers typically have no major negative effects if used as instructed.

Points to consider:

  • While retainers may initially cause minor discomfort or difficulty speaking, these issues typically resolve as you get used to wearing them.
  • Neglecting retainer use can lead to teeth shifting, which may necessitate additional orthodontic work.
  • Poor cleaning and maintenance of retainers can result in plaque buildup and an unpleasant odor.

What Are the Pros of Wearing Retainers?

The advantages of wearing retainers are numerous and contribute to maintaining a straight smile.

Points to consider:

  • Retainers help keep teeth in their corrected positions, ensuring long-lasting orthodontic results.
  • Consistent retainer use prevents the need for further orthodontic work, saving time and money.
  • Retainers are generally comfortable and unobtrusive, allowing you to maintain your desired smile without inconvenience.


Wearing your retainer every day is advisable for preserving orthodontic results and preventing teeth from shifting. Insurance coverage for retainers varies, so it's essential to review your policy and consult with your orthodontist regarding payment options. The choice of retainer type depends on individual needs and preferences, and all retainers are generally effective when used as recommended. While retainers may cause minor discomfort initially, their positive impact on maintaining a straight smile far outweighs any temporary issues. Consistent retainer wear is key to enjoying the benefits of orthodontic treatment.

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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.