Difference between retainers and Invisalign?

Invisalign and Clear essix retainer might look the same, but they are designed to do different tasks.

Invisalign is designed to move and straighten the teeth in small stages. With Invisalign you typically will have sets of clear aligners that you wear for two weeks at a time then go on to the next set of aligners. This process slowly puts pressure on the teeth moving them to there new position. The amount of aligners depends on how much movement is needed to straighten the teeth. Invisalign uses 1mm clear essix material to create these aligners. After the teeth are straighten, a set of retainers are required to prevent the teeth from going back to their original location.

Upper & Lower Dental Retainers
Upper & Lower Dental Retainers

Clear Essix retainers and designed just to prevent the teeth from shifting. Retainers will not move or straighten you teeth, they will prevent them from shifting further. Retainers are made using 1mm clear essix material the same as Invisalign.

Both Essix retainers and invisalign are made from the same material and are cleaned and taken care for the same. Retainers can last for many years while the invislign aligners are designed to only be used for a short period of time.

What are whitening gel reservoirs and why they are important.

Not all custom whitening trays are the same quality. They might be made of similar materials, but there are small differences that can make them more comfortable and effective.

Home Teeth Whitening
Sporting Smiles Home Teeth Whitening

First you want your whitening trays to have reservoirs. Reservoirs are small pockets that are on the whitening trays on the front of the tooth’s surface. These reservoirs allow for more room for the whitening gel to come in contact with the teeth. Whitening gel will naturally expand as it whitens the teeth. The reservoirs allow for the expansion of the whitening gel without the trays pulling away from your teeth.

If a low quality material is used to create the whitening trays then your trays can yellow quickly. All materials will yellow in time, but low quality material will yellow quicker.  You want to use a good cleaning product like fresh guard by efferdent to prevent your whitening trays from yellowing.

The way the whitening trays are trimmed affect the comfort or the whitening trays. If the whitening trays are just trimmed straight across and don’t follow the contours of the teeth iy allows the bleaching gel to come in contact with the gums. You can experience a burning sensation of the gums and less of the gel will come in contact with the teeth lowering the effectiveness.

5 Ways to prevent Dental Retainers from breaking

Are your clear retainers cracking or breaking?

Prevent Retainers breaking

One of the downsides of Essix retainers are they are fragile and can easily break if not properly cared for. The most common reason retainers break is improper removal. The second most common time retainers are broken is when they are being cleaned.

5 Ways to prevent Dental Retainers from breaking.

  1. Get Essix Plus Retainers– They are two times stronger than standard essix retainers and the same thickness.
  2. Remove Correctly– You want to use one finger on each side when removing the retainers to prevent flexing and twisting the retainers.
  3. Support During Cleaning- When brushing the retainers you don’t want to hold on to one side and brush the other side. You want to support the retainers in your hand or on a towel when brushing the retainers.
  4. Clean Correctly– You do not want to use alcohol based mouthwash with retainers. The alcohol in retainers will dry out and damage the retainers. We recommend using freshguard when cleaning your retainers. We have a video on youtube showing how this is done.
  5. Storage– You want to store your retainers in a case when not in use. You also what to keep away from pets. Dogs are known to eat retainers.
Upper + Lower Dental Retainers
Upper + Lower Dental Retainers

If you properly take care of your retainers they can last for many years. If you retainers have broken please visit SportingSmiles.com for a replacement.

How much does Dental Retainers Cost?

The price of a replacement retainer can vary on where the retainers are purchased from and the type of retainer. There is 3 different types of retainers available.

  1. Hawley Retainers– This type of retainers are also referred to as wire retainers. They are made using metal wire and dental acrylic.
    Hawley retainer
    Hawley Retainer

    One Hawley Retainer cost $175.00 – $325.00

  2. Permanent fixed retainer– This is a wire that is bonded on the lingual side of the teeth permanently to prevent the teeth from shifting. This is typically done on the lower teeth, but can also be done on the upper. This process has to be done by a dentist. One

    Fixed retainer $250.00-$400.00

  3. Essix Clear Retainer– These are the Invisalign type retainers made from 1mm Essix material.One Clear Retainer (SportingSmiles.com) $65.00
    Single Clear dental Retainers
    Single Clear dental Retainers

    One Clear Retainer (from dentist) $150.00 – $300.00
    One Clear Retainer (from SportingSmiles.com ) $65.00

The factors in the cost depend mainly on the dentist markup. Dentist with large overhead have a higher markup. Most of the removable retainers are not made in the dentist office, but rather off site at a dental lab. If you’re looking at removing the middle man Upper + Lower can be purchased for less than $100.

How to get a retainer from your own Molds.

Do you have your own molds from your dentist and want to get a replacement retainer made, but can’t find a company to make them? At SportingSmiles.com we can use your existing molds, but there is some stipulations on using outside dental molds.

  1. No Warranty- We can’t warranty outside molds because we don’t know how old they are. The new retainers maybe made perfect, but your teeth may have shifted since the impression was taken.
  2. Damaged Impression- There is a chance your teeth mold can be damaged when the new retainer is being made. We will try our best for this not to happen, but there is a chance this could happen. Dental impressions can dry out in time and there are different qualities in dental stone. Also there is a chance they may get damaged in the mail.
  3. Same Cost- There is no discount on using your existing impression. There is often more work to correct your current impression than there is in making a new one.

Advantages of using our Impression Kit.

  1. Full Warranty- We will warranty the retainers fully to make sure that it fits correctly.
  2. Reorder- SportingSmiles keeps all impression for 1 year. Reorders are at a discounted price.
  3. Easy Impression Process- SportingSmiles have a patented dental impression tray that makes it extremely easy to take an impression. Video instructions are also available.

We recommend using our self-impression kit, but we can use your existing molds to make a retainers. Our different styles of retainers can be seen here:

 

Top 10 terms for Teeth Grinding Guards.

Terms for Teeth Grinding guards.

  1. Occlusal Splint– Occlusal is the relationship between the upper and lower teeth.
  2. Bite Guard- Your bite is another dental term for occlusal surface.
  3. Night Guard– Since most people wear their teeth guard at night this term has become popular.
  4. TMJ Guard– TMJ is the pain associated with jaw joint and surrounding muscles. Typically one of the first treatments for TMJ is to get a guard.
  5. Bite Splint- Splint is a generic term that connects the teeth as one.
  6. Bruxism Guard- Bruxism is the medical term for teeth grinding\clenching.
  7. MouthGuard- Since the guard is in your mouth this term has originated. Mouthguard correctly used is the term for an athletic sports guard.
  8. Sleep Guard- Similar to the term night guard, since the guard is worn while sleeping.
  9. Teeth Grinding Guard- Teeth grinding guard and night guard are the two most common terms.
  10. Dental Guards- This is a generic term for any type of guard that is used in the mouth.
Teeth Grinding Guards
SportingSmiles grinding Guards

This is just a few of the terms used for teeth grinding guards. There is often a mixture of the terms. Like Occlusal Guard, Bruxism Splint, Bite Guard, Sleep Splint, and Tmj Splint. No matter what term you are using, the guards do the same thing. They protect your teeth at night from teeth grinding\clenching.  If your interested in purchasing please visit. http://www.SportingSmiles.com

 

My Gums Hurt from Teeth Whitening.

The most common issue with teeth whitening is that your gums burn during teeth whitening. We get asked this question all the time.

If your gums hurt or burn, or if you see white spots on your gums this is all caused by the same reason. You are putting to much whitening gel in the tray and the gel is getting pushed on to your gums.

Home Teeth Whitening
Sporting Smiles Home Teeth Whitening

You want to put a very small bead of whitening gel on the lower part of the tray. It can range anywhere from .25ml to .6ml depending on the size of your mouth. You need to do a little trial and error to see what’s the correct amount for your size mouth. If whitening gel gets on the gums you want to wipe it off quickly with your finger or using a tissue.

If you see white spots on your gums do not worry, the spots will typically go away in about an hour.

If you are interested in getting custom whitening trays. SportingSmiles Whitening Trays

 

Teeth whitening for the whole wedding party?

We had brides and grooms order our custom whitening trays in bulk for gifts for their bridal party. We thought this was such a great idea that we made it one of our products.

Teeth Whitening for you bridal party.
Teeth Whitening for you bridal party.

Giving the wedding party a gift of teeth whitening isn’t just a gift for your guests. It also helps to make sure you have the best looking wedding party for all your photos. This will be a unique type of gift. This is much better than the standard engraved glass or other standard wedding type gifts. This is a product they can use for years and will not be stored in a closet of thrown away like other wedding gifts. Even if many of your wedding party already have white teeth the custom trays are nice for doing touch ups to maintain their white teeth. We even sell the whitening gel for future use.

Surprise your wedding party with something different!

If you interested in our custom wedding party kit. It can be seen HERE:

Why do dogs eat retainers?

We hear at least 4-5x a week that “my dog ate my retainer!”

Dogs love to eat dental retainers
Dogs love to eat dental retainers

Dogs are attracted to the saliva, the smell, as well as the material that the retainers are made from.

The clear Essix style retainers are made from EVA (Ethylene-Vinyl Acetate). This is often the same type of vinyl found in a dogs chew toys.  It doesn’t take long for a dog of any size to destroy a retainer.

We recommend that you store your retainers in a case, in a cool dry place such as drawer, or a high location out of reach from your pet.

If your pet is prone to chewing up your retainers it is always a good idea to have a back-up pair to avoid any down time without your retainer.

Upper + Lower Dental Retainers
Upper + Lower Dental Retainers

 

At SportingSmiles.com the re-order process is easy and efficient. Whether you need just the upper retainer, just the lower retainer, or both. We keep your impressions on file for at least 1 year to make re-ordering a snap!