6 Signs Your Retainer Needs Replacing ( 2021 Update)

Retainers are important. They keep the newly formed teeth and jaw alignment in place. They come in all sorts of styles and device types. Keeping them in tiptop shape takes a small amount of care. Otherwise, replacements can be costly and disruptive to the wearer’s lifestyle. Your retainer might have cracks or show signs of wear and tear. In this post, we’ll show you 6 signs your retainer needs replacing. Let’s get going.

Loose Fitting Retainer

How long should you wear your retainer? If your retainer starts feeling loose, that’s a strong sign it’s time to replace it. This doesn’t mean there is an issue with your teeth. Retainers wear down over time and grow wider. But you’re not getting the benefits of wearing one anymore because a loose retainer won’t hold them in place. 

Cracked Retainer

Your retainer is a small price to pay for your perfect smile. If you notice cracks in the material while examining it, then it’s probably time for replacement because these will only continue to get bigger if left unaddressed.

Eventually, this lack of stability can lead to teeth sliding out of alignment and not looking their best which means that letting go now could mean losing more than just your future dental health.

girl with retainers

Warped/Misshapen Braces

Your teeth rely on a retainer in order to stay healthy and prevent future dental problems. However, this also means they have more chances of getting warped or damaged than ever before. If you find yourself with a mouthful of metal that doesn’t seem like it fits right, don’t worry. 

There are many reasons why this might happen. Most importantly because not wearing one long enough can warp them. Also, retainers can warp from being too hot when cleaning them off after dinner. 

Build up of Calcium

Even if you are diligent about proper retainer maintenance and take it out as often as your dentist instructs, calcium can build up over time. The problem is that a buildup of these minerals on the surface makes one less excited to wear their retainer every day as they should be. 

If you or your child has stopped wearing theirs because of this nasty problem, now would be the perfect time for an upgrade!

Lost Retainer 

It’s never a good feeling to lose your retainer. It can be hard on teeth and make it difficult to speak or eat properly but don’t worry. There are solutions for these problems too. If you find yourself in this situation then contact your orthodontist as soon as possible so that they may take an impression of your mouth and create the perfect replacement for you. 

Retainer Fatigue 

Retainer fatigue is why some people experience minor tooth movement even if they’re diligent about wearing their retainer. The constant stress the wearer experiences on the material causes it to wear out over time, eventually allowing for micro-movements in teeth that were once safely aligned.

When you take your clear retainer off and put it back on again each day, there’s a minute amount of “fatigue” from how much pressure is being exerted onto its surface area at any given moment. 

This process will continue until enough force has been applied to cause small movements in certain areas of one’s mouth which can be tough since braces are meant primarily as preventive measures instead of corrective ones.


At Childers Orthodontics in Illinois, our orthodontist can help with any issue. Including Invisalign aligners and aligner retainers. We are open for new Children, teenagers, and adults to have an examination and to learn more about straightening their teeth.

Dr. Kyle R. Childers offers expertise in all procedures. This is to reduce the amount of time required for wearing orthodontic devices. Call us to schedule your first appointment for an orthodontic evaluation.

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