“I lost one of my invisible braces aligners! Now what?” Before you panic about losing an aligner, understand that this is fairly normal. There are steps you can take to ensure your teeth stay on the right track. Here are some tips for what to do when you lose a clear aligner.
Go Back, Go Forward, Or Get Replacement Trays?
This is the biggest question when you lose a clear aligner. Should you go back to the set before, get replacements for the ones you were wearing, or move on to the next set? This will partly depend on where you were in your cycle. Ideally, you should use a set of replacement trays for the full duration you were supposed to wear the others. However, if you are close to the day you were schedule to move on, you may be able to skip to the next set of trays.
We usually do not recommend going backwards with your treatment because that will slow down your progress. It could change your treatment altogether. If you just switched to a new set of trays within the last day or two, you may be able to wear an old set while your replacements are being made. Or if you happen to lose a set before you have a chance to start wearing them, you may be asked to stay in the old ones while the replacements are prepared.
Talk To Your Orthodontist Before Doing Anything
Before you decide what to do, talk to your orthodontist. He or she will make the best decisions based on your care plan. If you need replacement trays, pick them up as quickly as possible. If you’re able to move on to the next set of trays, you will need to talk about how that changes your invisible braces schedule. Will you use the set after that at the same time, or will you need to bump those up to accommodate the change? Your orthodontist will go over all of this with you.
Try Not To Make This A Habit
You can advance to a new tray a little early, but that doesn’t mean you should do this all the time. There is a reason why you’re told to wear trays for 2-3 weeks before advancing to new ones. That gives your mouth plenty of time to adjust to your teeth’s new position, and it reduces the pain you experience with new trays. Follow your schedule as much as possible, and keep track of your aligners at all times. You will have a gorgeous straight smile in no time!