How To Clean Invisalign Retainers
Invisalign is a great way to straighten teeth and improve dental health without the hassle of wearing traditional metal braces. Like all dental and orthodontic appliances, however, Invisalign retainers require proper care and upkeep to keep them invisible and free of bacteria.
Here are a few ways to keep your Invisalign trays looking and functioning as good as new throughout treatment.
How can I clean my Invisalign retainer?
Although Invisalign allows for aligners to be removed for eating, drinking and oral hygiene, neglecting to clean your trays properly afterward can result in discoloration, odor and a buildup of bacteria. These simple tips can help you keep your retainers fresh:
- Whenever you remove your aligners, rinse them with cool water to prevent the buildup of saliva and bacteria. Store them in their proper container to avoid losing or damaging them.
- Brush and floss your teeth before reinserting your retainers. Proper oral hygiene is a critical step to maintaining healthy teeth and preventing food particles from becoming trapped between your teeth and aligner.
- Brush your Invisalign retainers gently with your toothbrush and lukewarm water. Brushing too hard can damage your trays and create unwanted, visible etchings.
Safe Products to Clean Discolored Invisalign Retainers
Always check with your dentist first before using any cleaning products on your Invisalign trays. One of the easiest ways to clean your aligners is with a soft-bristled toothbrush and lukewarm water. Clear, anti-bacterial soap can also be used to keep the aligners clear and free from harmful bacteria. Simply use a small amount of liquid dish soap and a toothbrush dedicated only to cleaning your trays to gently scrub away residue. A homemade vinegar solution mixed with water is also a safe and effective method for dissolving plaque and debris from your retainers.
If you are looking for a professional cleaning solution, you may prefer the Invisalign cleaning system, which is manufactured by Invisalign. This soaking solution is easy and efficient, but may not be as cost-effective as at-home remedies. Other products, such as Retainer Brite, work the same way as denture cleaners, but differ in that they are formulated in a way that they will not harshly affect your Invisalign retainer’s plastic.
Cleaning Products to Avoid
As a general rule, avoid using any harsh products or chemicals on your retainers. These will not only damage your aligners, but may also be harmful to your health. These include:
- Toothpaste. Abrasive toothpastes, like whitening agents, may scratch or dull the surface of your retainer.
- Denture cleaners. Denture cleaners are too abrasive, which can dull your aligner’s appearance and make it more visible when worn.
- Mouthwash. Soaking your retainers in colored mouthwash may stain or tint them.
- Alcohol and bleach. Both of these solutions are highly abrasive and may damage your retainers.
- Boiling water. Hot water is never recommended for sterilizing your Invisalign trays. Invisalign retainers are sensitive to heat, and very hot water may distort them, resulting in them not fitting properly.
Contact Natomas Crossing Dental Care for Invisalign
Keeping your Invisalign retainers clean is an easy and crucial part of your overall treatment. if you are uncertain about which method you should use to clean your Invisalign retainers, always ask your dentist. At Natomas Crossing Dental Care, we can provide you with proper instructions on the best ways to clean Invisalign aligners so that your retainers are always clean, fresh, and free of bacteria and debris.