What Should I Do if I Lose or Break an Invisalign® Aligner?

September 20, 2019

A woman smiling while holding an Invisalign aligner.
If you lose your Invisalign aligner, don’t panic. Instead, take these steps to keep your Invisalign treatment on track.

1. Contact Your Orthodontist

Your orthodontist can let you know what steps you should take. If you’re almost ready to move onto the next tray, your orthodontist might recommend just moving to the next step in your treatment. If you’re still scheduled to stick with your current tray for a while, you might need a replacement tray to finish out the current step before moving onto the next.

While you’re waiting for a replacement tray, move onto step two.

2. Wear Your Previous Aligner Set

The best option to keep your Invisalign treatment on track is to wear your previous aligner set until you’ve talked to your orthodontist. While wearing your previous set won’t move your treatment forward, it should help you stay on track while you wait.
A woman putting in an Invisalign aligner.

What Happens When You Don’t Wear Any Aligners?

Not wearing any aligners, including your previous aligners, can slow down your treatment, but you can help stay on schedule by wearing an aligner. Wearing any aligner means you don’t have to worry about your teeth moving back to where they were before you started treatment.

If you suspect that your aligners aren’t fitting right, always contact your orthodontist to monitor your treatment’s progress and if necessary, create new aligners to make sure your teeth are moving as they should.

3. Get a Replacement Set or Move On to the Next Aligner Set

Because Invisalign is designed to move your teeth in a very specific way, it’s important to ask whether or not it’s okay to move onto the next set of aligners. However, what your orthodontist recommends could be determined by how long you had until you were scheduled to move to your next tray:

  • If you were only a few days away from moving onto your next set of aligners, you’ll most likely be able to move onto the next set without setting your treatment time back.
  • If you have more than a few days before moving onto your next set, your orthodontist may recommend a replacement aligner.

You can also try putting in your next tray yourself. If it fits comfortably enough like you’re normally switching a tray, then it may be possible to wear the next set instead of waiting for a replacement.

You might have to wear the new tray a little longer to shift your teeth the rest of the way, but it may still be a better option than waiting for a replacement aligner.

How Do I Avoid Losing or Breaking My Aligners?

Invisalign is only successful if your aligners are worn for the recommended 20-22 hours per day, which means you have to keep track of your aligners to stay on schedule. If you’re worried about misplacing your aligner, here are a few easy ideas you can try:

  • Always store your aligner in their case
  • Never put your aligners on a napkin or plate
  • Keep the aligners from your previous set in case of emergencies
  • If you have pets, store your aligner case in a high place or in a drawer where they can’t get to it

If you want more tips, we went a little more in depth with these five ways to keep track of your retainer. We’ve also included some tips in our free downloadable guide on how to care for your Invisalign aligners.
An Inivsalign case sitting on a table.

What Happens If I Break My Permanent Retainers?

If you’ve already finished your Invisalign treatment and have a permanent or bonded retainer, you can run into the same problem as this! We’ve covered this topic more extensively in our blog.

Interested in Starting Invisalign?

When done right, Invisalign is an effective way to straighten your teeth, without the appearance of braces. If you want to get started, contact Smile Ranch Orthodontics for your free consultation. We’d be happy to walk through each treatment option and see if Invisalign would be right for you.

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