Frequently Asked Questions

Getting a removable appliance

  • 1. Are there different types of removable dental appliances?

    There are lots of different types of removable dental appliances which fulfil specific needs. From removable retainers to transparent aligners and nightguards, different types of appliances have different roles to play. 

    Your dentist will guide you through what you need as part of your orthodontic treatment and which removable dental appliance is right for you. 

  • 2. What is a nightguard?

    A nightguard is typically worn through the night to prevent you from grinding your teeth in your sleep. The core purpose is to protect your teeth by providing a protective barrier between your upper and lower teeth. Find out more about nightguards here.

  • 3. What is a retainer?

    A retainer is typically used at the end of treatment after aligning your teeth.  It holds straightened teeth in place while the surrounding gum and bone adjust to their new position. Sometimes people call aligners retainers and can look quite similar, however, they do very different jobs. Your dentist will be able to confirm what removable dental appliance you have.  Find out more about retainers here

  • 4. What to expect when getting a retainer/nightguard?

    Understanding what’s part of the process in getting a nightguard or retainer can help you manage your expectations.  

    An impression will be taken of your teeth in order to be used as a mold for your bespoke appliance. Your dentist will then provide you with specific instructions on when, where and how to use your appliance.

Living with a removable appliance

  • 1. How should I look after my removable dental appliance?

    Regular daily cleaning is essential to good appliance care. You can explore our appliance cleansing tablets here.

    Appliances should be stored in a case to avoid damage when not in the mouth. Your dentist will be able to provide specific instructions on other things you might need to avoid.

    You can find out more about caring for your retainer here

  • 2. How long will my removable dental appliance last?

    The lifespan of your appliance, such as aligner, nightguard or retainer, varies depending on what it is there to do. If you have any concerns or questions, your dentist will be able to advise if it needs replacing.

  • 3. How to clean my removeable dental appliance?

    Germs, plaque and minerals (tartar) can regularly build up on removable dental appliances, which is why it is vitally important to clean it every day and in the right way.

    You can discover a cleaning routine designed to keep your retainer, aligner or nightguard clean and fresh here.

  • 4. When do I know if my removable dental appliance needs replacing?

    Your dentist will be able to advise you on when your removable dental appliance needs replacing, however, it’s important to care for it properly to help avoid damage and discolouration and keep it smelling fresh. 

    When it’s not in use, keep your appliance in its case to help keep it clean and safe.