Tech tip: What makes engagers fall off?

Not too long ago, a doctor wrote to us saying that he was having trouble getting engagers to stay on his patient's teeth.

Our chief technical officer, Paul Dinh, shares his thoughts:

Engagers coming off the tooth when removing the trays usually means the composite is not fully adhering to the tooth. Here are some possible causes and solutions for this problem:

  • Sometimes plaque might prevent the etch from working.
    • Micro etching (sand blasting) will remove the plaque properly.
  • The tooth is a restoration.
    • Use a special etch for porcelain from your dental supplier. (This does not always work.)
  • Petroleum jelly from the template is accidentally smearing on the tooth.
    • Lift the template off of the tooth during insertion. Or, if possible, use the previous aligner to install the engager without using petroleum jelly. The composite won't adhere to used aligners as much as it will to new templates.
  • Compressed air used to dry the tooth is contaminated with oil.
    • This is the most common problem with compressed air and is hard to correct in the system.  Try drying the tooth with a low-heat blow dryer that can be bought at a dental suppler.

If you have any tips regarding engagers, let us know in the comments.

Until next time...

blog comments powered by Disqus