What To Do If You Lose Your Retainers After Wearing Braces

a close-up image of a person holding a retainer

Retainers are an important orthodontic appliance that helps keep your teeth in position after wearing braces.

Unlike fixed retainers which are attached to the back of your teeth, removable retainers are easy to misplace due to being transparent. This makes it difficult to find them as they can often make their way into all sorts of different places, and sometimes even bins!

This can leave you in an unfortunate situation, where you may be asking yourself where to get a retainer replacement and how much will it cost.

You may also worry about your teeth moving out of alignment, especially if you’ve recently only just finished your orthodontic treatment and have had your braces removed recently.

Do not fear as this article guides you on how to go about replacing your retainers.

Contact Your Orthodontist

Your first port of call is to contact your orthodontist as soon as possible. Your orthodontist will already be familiar with the condition of your teeth and can make you a replacement retainer based on your dental record.

Your orthodontist might need to make a model of your teeth. These models are usually made with traditional moulding putty or 3D scans. When these models are ready, they are sent to a lab where your set of retainers is made.

It’s best to contact your orthodontist immediately after losing your retainer. Especially as your teeth are at great risk of becoming misaligned again.

Orthodontic Relapse

If your teeth have shifted since losing your retainers, we tend to call this an ‘orthodontic relapse’. If this is the case, you may be required to have some form of orthodontic treatment carried out to help straighten your teeth again. At Hampstead, we offer an excellent Invisalign treatment that can effectively help align your teeth using advanced technology.

How Much Does It Cost To Get New Retainers?

Costs for replacing retainers can vary in price depending on the type of retainers. For most sets of retainers, they can cost anywhere between £60 to £700.

Some brands such as Vivera retainers cost £125 – £200, which include four sets of retainers. Whereas, Essix retainers cost between £60 – £145 for a single retainer which you can order online.

However, both brands are also available to purchase from most orthodontic practices.

Tips On Looking After Your Retainers

To avoid losing your retainers, here is some advice to help you care for your orthodontic appliances:

  • Keep retainers in a protective case. For future reference, it’s always advisable to keep your retainers in a protective case. You can find plenty of retainer cases that come with lots of different bright colours, making it easier to locate them. It’s also a good idea to have a spare retainer case as a backup, especially if you travel often.
  • Avoid wrapping retainers in tissue. It’s best to avoid wrapping retainers in tissues or napkins during meals, as it is easy for retainers to fall out and potentially go in the bin.
  • Keep retainers away from pets. It is highly recommended that you keep retainers away from pets as they can potentially damage them.

What To Do If You Find Your Retainers Again?

In an event that you happen to find your original pair of retainers, it’s advisable to check to see if they still fit. This is important as your teeth can move after your orthodontic treatment.  

If your teeth feel like they are squeezing into your retainers, this shows that they no longer fit around the position of your teeth. Therefore, it is highly recommended that you visit your orthodontist to help create a new set of retainers.

Where Else Can I Get New Retainers?

You can also purchase retainers online such as clear plastic retainers, Vivera and Essix retainers online. Although it’s always best to order from a reputable and trusted company (or better yet – an orthodontist).

Ordering retainers online involves receiving a tooth impression kit which allows you to make a model of your teeth at home which you can then send back to the company.

Some retainer wearers prefer ordering retainers online as they find it more convenient. However, we encourage wearers to visit the orthodontist to get an accurate idea of what condition their teeth are in.

Word of Advice

Losing your retainers can happen to the best of us. It’s imperative that you get a replacement for your retainers as soon as possible as your teeth can begin to move again.

It’s equally important to look after your retainers and wear them frequently in order to maintain the shape of your newly aligned teeth after wearing braces.

Therefore, clear plastic retainers ideally need to be replaced every few years, with some retainers needing to be replaced every 6 months.

How We Can Help

If you’ve lost your retainers after having your braces removed, contact us today and book a free consultation. Or alternatively, call us on 020 3722 4187.

Our team of experienced orthodontists can provide you with expert advice on replacing your retainers.

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