How Dentists Put a Permanent Retainer on the Teeth?

Permanent retainers offer a creative solution for maintaining a straight smile post-braces. But have you ever wondered how dentists secure these retainers behind the teeth? Let’s delve into the process and discover how orthodontists ensure a lasting smile with braces behind the teeth.

Understanding Permanent Retainers

After orthodontic treatment with traditional braces or aligners; the teeth tend to return to their original positions without proper retention. Permanent retainers, also known as fixed retainers, are thin wires bonded to the back surfaces of the teeth to prevent this regression. The permanent ones are affixed and provide continuous support to align the teeth.


Before placing a permanent retainer, the dentist evaluates the patient’s oral health and assesses the alignment of the teeth. Any necessary adjustments or cleaning procedures are performed to ensure a smooth surface for bonding. X-rays may also be taken to guide the placement process accurately.

braces behind the teeth

Bonding Process

The bonding process begins with isolating the teeth using dental dams to keep them dry and free from saliva. Next, the dentist carefully etches the back surfaces of the teeth with a mild acid to create a rough texture, which enhances the bond strength. A dental adhesive, typically a composite resin, is then applied to the teeth, and the thin wire of the permanent retainer is positioned along the lingual or palatal side of the teeth. The adhesive is cured using a specialised light, securing the retainer in place.


Orthodontists use dental impressions or digital scans to create precise moulds, ensuring a snug and comfortable fit. The wire used for the retainer is usually made of stainless steel or flexible composite material, offering durability and minimal interference with speech or oral hygiene.

Benefits of Braces Behind the Teeth

Braces behind the teeth, also known as lingual braces, offer several advantages over traditional braces. They are virtually invisible from the front, making them ideal for individuals who wish to maintain a natural appearance during orthodontic treatment. Lingual braces also minimise the risk of enamel decalcification and demineralisation since they are placed on the inner surfaces of the teeth.

Permanent retainers play a crucial role in preserving the results of orthodontic treatment, especially for individuals with complex tooth movements or a history of relapse. By understanding how dentists secure these retainers behind the teeth, patients can appreciate the meticulous process involved in achieving a lasting, confident smile.

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