Do Retainers Have to Be Replaced?

With how often you wear your retainer post-aligner treatment, it can feel like you and your retainer are an inseparable pair. However, in order to keep your brilliant new smile, you will have to part with your retainer every so often to ensure your teeth do not shift back into their pre-treatment position. Why? Because your retainer will need to be replaced.

How Should You Wear Your Retainer?

Just as stretching every day helps to keep you flexible, wearing your retainer after Invisalign or braces keeps your new smile intact. Wearing your retainer after getting your braces off is important in maintaining your beautiful smile. It’s crucial to get at least 12 hours of wear every day unless instructed otherwise by your orthodontist. 

Eventually, many orthodontics patients report that after several years, they only wear their retainers three to five times a week and still maintain a healthy smile. Prolonged use of your retainer is recommended to keep up your brilliant smile for years to come. 

When Should You Replace Your Retainer?

Just like your favorite pair of shoes, retainers will wear out over time, not fit as well anymore, and need to be replaced. If your retainer no longer fits as snug, becomes scratched or cloudy looking, it may be time to call your orthodontist to get a new retainer.

Milnor Orthodontics offers a retainer replacement program where you can sign up to get a new  retainer shipped straight to you at regular intervals. You can sign up for a yearly, six-month, or other plan. Dr. Milnor will work with you to determine the perfect timing for you and your smile. 

Invisalign offers their own brand of retainers that pairs perfectly with the well-known treatment plan you trust. Invisalign’s Vivera aligners are made of 30% stronger and more durable materials than the average retainer while still being custom fit to you. These retainers look and feel similar to the Invisalign aligners you know and love.

Retainer Care and Reminders

Caring for your retainers is key to ensuring you don’t have to replace them more often than necessary. Be sure to always store your retainers in its proper, clean case when they are not in use. This is especially true if you have pets, since curious animals love to chew on retainers if they can get to them! Retainers should also never be placed in hot water, in pockets, on hot car dashboards, or on napkins.

Always bring your retainers to appointments. If you think your retainer may need an adjustment, call us to schedule an appointment rather than trying to adjust it yourself. If you need a replacement retainer, have questions about your retainer or are ready to begin on your Invisalign journey for a healthier, straighter smile, contact the office of Milnor Orthodontics today to get started!

At Milnor Orthodontics, our experts are here to help you achieve a priceless smile. Call our office at (970) 230-3187 or visit to learn more. We're located at 1103 S. Shields St. in Fort Collins, Colorado.