A dog ate my retainer….

A dog ate my retainer….

“So, uh, my dog ate my retainers.”

This happens with surprising frequency, but why is the question! 

The working theory is that dogs think retainers are food.  Think about it. Your retainer goes in your mouth, and no matter how well the retainer gets brushed after wearing, while  mouths are closed and the retainer is in use, the retainers start taking on the scent of whatever was eaten last.  This is totally normal. And while brushing retainers every time you brush your teeth helps to keep them clean, we all know dog noses are way more sensitive than human noses.

How do I keep my retainer safe?

It is imperative to keep retainers safe while they’re not in your mouth; retainer cases are quite helpful for this.  The cases will definitely protect them from being sat on, thrown away, etc. But those dog noses can still smell that retainer from within its case. When retainers are not being worn, keep them in a case, and actually, put them in a drawer or high on a counter.

What happens if my dog does get to my retainer? 

Call your orthodontist immediately. You have spent a lot of time and effort to get to a beautiful smile and you don’t want to waste all that effort by not having a retainer to keep the teeth straight.  The position from where your teeth moved from is still vacant for quite some time. The retainer is necessary to hold the teeth in position while new bone grows. And even 5 years after your braces have come off, there is the possibility that your teeth could move just from general wear and grinding.  Make sure you get any lost, broken, or eaten retainers replaced as soon as possible!