Survey on retention procedures and use of thermoplastic retainers among orthodontists in Norway, Sweden, and Denmark

Tord Hamran*, Emina Čirgić, Akila Aiyar, Vaska Vandevska-Radunovic

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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Background: Orthodontic retention is the most important factor after successful orthodontic treatment. The use of thermoplastic retainers has increased in recent years, but information is lacking about the product materials and orthodontists’ awareness of the products they use. The aim of this survey was to map the retention protocols among Scandinavian orthodontists, particularly their use of thermoplastic retainers. Furthermore, the aim was to investigate their knowledge of thermoplastic materials and record any possible adverse effects. Methods: An online questionnaire was prepared, and 667 orthodontists in Norway, Sweden, and Denmark were invited to take the survey. The survey was sent to all members of the national orthodontic associations using Nettskjema in Norway and Microsoft Forms in Sweden and Denmark. Data were collected anonymously and analyzed using chi-square and correlation coefficients. Results: Of the 667 orthodontists, 432 (64%) responded (59% female). The most common retention protocol (51%) was fixed retainer in both maxilla and mandible and thermoplastic retainer in the maxilla. Two-thirds of the orthodontists were unaware of the thermoplastic material used, and 58% did not acquire knowledge of the materials. Only 1% of the respondents had registered adverse reactions to thermoplastic retainers, and none were aware of the type of material that was used. Conclusions: Scandinavian orthodontists use similar retention protocols, with the most common being fixed retainer in the mandible and dual retention, fixed, and thermoplastic retainer in the maxilla. Orthodontists’ knowledge about thermoplastic materials was insufficient, but adverse effects related to thermoplastic retainer use were rare.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of the World Federation of Orthodontists
Pages (from-to)114-119
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2022


  • Materials
  • Orthodontics
  • Plastics
  • Retention
  • Thermoplastic retainers


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