It has happened to all of us before where we forget to wear our retainer at night. Maybe it has been just a couple of nights or you have not worn your retainer in more than a week. Different situations can cause a person to forget to wear a retainer from traveling and leaving it behind at home or misplacing the retainer in general. The big question becomes, what will happen to your teeth when you forget to wear your retainer and for an extended period? Well, let’s find out!
Why is a retainer important?
First, it is important to discuss why a retainer is important and the purpose it serves for your teeth. A retainer is a dental device used to hold your teeth in the correct place after a person has used a type of braces to straighten the teeth. There are many different forms of retainers that can be used that will all achieve the purpose of keeping your teeth straight and from moving back to their original state. As you can imagine, retainers can last for a while if proper care is taken.
How do you take care of a retainer?
Taking care of your retainer is important to make it last longer and continue to keep your teeth straight. A few tips that we recommend you follow in order to take care of your retainer include:
- Always take out your retainer before you start to eat or drink anything other than water.
- Clean your retainer regularly by soaking it or using a toothbrush to scrub.
- Do not brush your teeth with your retainer in your mouth.
- Do not use harsh chemicals or cleaners to clean your retainer.
We recommend that you follow these important tips to not only keep your retainer clean but to also increase its longevity. A retainer will always take care of your teeth to keep them straight and aligned if you properly take care of your retainer in return!
What happens when you forget to wear your retainer at night?
If you end up forgetting to wear your retainer for any reason, no need to worry right away if it is a one-time deal. It happens to everyone where you forget to wear your retainer to sleep. While you may want to say that it won’t happen to you, this isn’t the case, unfortunately. When you forget to wear your retainer at night, you run the risk of losing your straight smile and all the time spent wearing your braces. However, if you only forget to wear your retainer for a night, likely the visible appearance of your teeth won’t change right away but can if this continues to happen.
What happens if you continue to forget to wear your retainer?
Common questions dentists hear about wearing a retainer include:
- What happens if I don’t wear my retainer for a day?
- What happens if I don’t wear my retainer for a week?
If you continue to forget to wear your retainer, more serious consequences and issues are prone to happen. Most likely, your teeth that were once perfectly straight will begin to move back to their previous position before braces. The whole point of braces was for you to straighten your teeth so by doing this, you can go extremely backward and have misaligned teeth once again. We do not recommend forgetting your retainer for an extended period of time. Your retainer should be worn every single night to ensure straight, aligned teeth.
Still have questions?
If you still have questions about your retainer and how it should be properly worn, we are here to answer all of your questions. We want to ensure that you keep your bright and straight smile for the rest of your life. Proper care and retainer use are important in order to achieve this! Feel free to reach out to us at Derksen Dentistry if you have any questions or concerns about your retainer.