Invisalign is the latest technology in orthodontic treatment. Using clear plastic trays that fit over the teeth, Invisalign gradually shifts the teeth into proper alignment. It provides patients with a discreet option for straightening their teeth.
If you’re considering Invisalign or have already started treatment, you may be wondering how to clean your Invisalign aligners, often referred to as trays or retainers. Here are some suggestions for how to safely and effectively clean your aligners.
Brush Them With a Soft Bristled Toothbrush and Mild Soap
One of the best ways to clean your aligners on a daily basis is to brush them with a soft bristled toothbrush and mild, clear soap. Using a clear, unscented soap is best so that the color and fragrance doesn’t transfer for your aligners, which can cause an odd taste and tint. A soft bristled toothbrush is best so that you don’t scratch the plastic of your aligners. Scratching can make them look cloudy and less clear on your teeth.
Brushing your aligners daily removes food particles and bacteria that can cause tooth decay and bad breath. Be sure to brush your teeth before putting clean aligners back in your mouth.
Use Invisalign Cleaning Crystals
Invisalign makes a cleaning system that is designed especially for your aligners. It consists of cleaning crystals and a case. You simply pour cleaning crystals into the case, fill it with water, add your aligners, and shake. The crystals remove food particles and bacteria to make your aligners clean and clear without damaging the smooth plastic.
You can order Invisalign cleaning crystals directly from Invisalign or ask your dentist how you can get them.
What Not to Do:
- Do not soak them in mouthwash. Mouthwash is not meant to be a cleaning product for Invisalign trays. It is too harsh and the strong flavor and color may cling to your aligners.
- Do not use alcohol. Alcohol is too harsh for Invisalign aligners.
- Do not use a denture cleaner. Denture cleaner is designed specifically for the materials that dentures are made of, not the clear flexible plastic of Invisalign trays. It can potentially damage your trays and cause them to lose some of their clarity.
- Do not brush them with the same toothbrush you use on your teeth. The toothbrush you use on your teeth will contain bacteria from your mouth. If you also use it on your aligners, you will redistribute bacteria onto your aligners that will prevent them from being as clean as they could be.
- Do not brush them with an abrasive toothpaste. The type of toothpaste that is made for teeth is meant to be slightly abrasive in order to remove plaque. This abrasiveness will scratch your aligners and make them cloudy, as well as leave small indentations for bacteria to gather.
Always Rinse Your Aligners Whenever You Take Them Out
At the very least, you should always rinse your aligners with water whenever you take them out. You only need to clean them with soap once or twice a day when you brush your teeth, but rinsing them throughout the day will go a long way toward keeping them clean and free of food residue and bacteria.
Nowak Family Dental is a Certified Invisalign Provider
If you’re interested in trying Invisalign as a teeth straightening treatment, Nowak Family Dental provides this option for patients. Invisalign can be provided by dental offices and does not require you to see an orthodontist. After an initial consultation to determine whether or not you are an ideal candidate for Invisalign, your treatment can begin.