Modern-day inventions have made things so much more convenient and appealing. Have you tried removable wallpaper? Or maybe you’ve tried a cool temporary tattoo. Just like these modern luxuries, Invisalign has provided a removable and aesthetically pleasing way to straighten your teeth. But with the easy removal of these clear trays, versus the stuck-in-place metal braces, comes the risk of losing them. You wanted them to be invisible in your mouth, not everywhere else! Your dentist is here to guide you on what to do so you can continue toward your picture-perfect smile!
First Things First
First, take a deep breath. Losing aligners is not uncommon and there is a solution. Being stressed out will only shut your brain down and keep you from problem-solving.
Aligners often get lost when they are taken out during mealtimes. You might have wrapped them in a napkin to keep them safe or placed them on a tray near your plate. They could easily be mistaken for garbage. Be sure to take a deep look near your dining area and in any nearby trash bins. Once you find your aligner, you should thoroughly sanitize it before placing it in your mouth.
Invisalign trays can also get lost during contact sports or rigorous activities; you should take them out during practice or games. It is wise to use a mouthguard instead. Checking around your locker, as well as in the bag with your belongings, might lead you right back to your lost aligner.
If all of your efforts to find your aligners prove to be unsuccessful, the next step is to call your orthodontist. They might advise you to:
- Switch to a new set of aligners. This may be an option if you were only a few days from moving on to the next aligner in your treatment. However, you should not do this without your dentist’s approval. Moving to a new aligner too quickly can cause significant discomfort and other issues.
- Go back to wearing an old set of aligners. Wearing a previous aligner can prevent your teeth from shifting too far out of place while you wait for your orthodontist to receive a replacement for the one that got lost.
Your orthodontist will lead you—and your smile—in the right direction while you wait for a replacement aligners.
As the saying goes, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Use these simple but important tips to keep your aligners from disappearing:
- Always put your aligners in their case when you take them out. Having a brightly colored case can be easier to keep track of.
- Have a dedicated and consistent place where you place your case
- Keep your aligners in as much as you can. Only remove them when it’s necessary, like eating or drinking something other than water, or cleaning your teeth.
- Don’t place them on a plate, tray, or wrap them in a napkin. They are more likely to be accidentally thrown away or lost.
If your Invisalign trays have suddenly become invisible, all is not lost! Review these tips and give your dentist a call if necessary. You will soon be back on track to your dream smile.
About the Author
Dr. Alex Johnson received his dental doctorate and Orthodontic Certificate at Washington University. With over 30 years of experience, he finds great joy in seeing people love their smiles again. His holistic orthodontic philosophy focuses on excellent treatment for teenagers and adults. If you need help with your Invisalign or other smile-enhancing treatments, contact him through his website or call (727) 387-0955.