Invisalign aligners have become very popular ever since it was introduced as an alternative to traditional metal braces. Many individuals have begun their journey of transforming their smile for the better by choosing Invisalign for their orthodontic treatment. We all know how important it is for the aligners to be worn for at least 22 hours daily, sadly however, some people do not know that it is very important to clean the aligners daily. You can find out more about caring for your Invisalign when you visit our clinic in Harley Street.
Cleaning your braces is more than just for aesthetic reasons. It is majorly because the aligners are very susceptible to bacteria, which can lead to bad breath if the germs and bacteria are not removed through regular cleaning. Much like your teeth, your aligners should be cleaned daily to ensure their treatment. Below are some helpful tips, as well as some routines and methods for a daily clean. For more information read this blog
Daily cleaning routine for Invisalign aligners
Clean both aligners and your teeth when you wake up
The major rule for Invisalign states that they should be worn for at least 22 hours daily. This means you also have to wear them when you sleep at night. A lot of activity goes on in our mouth even as we sleep, leading to bacteria buildup. The first thing to do each morning when you wake up will be to remove the aligners, clean your mouth and also the aligner trays before putting them back into your mouth. Repeat the same process before you go to sleep at night.
Brush and floss before replacing the aligners
Being worn for 22 hours means you only remove them for eating and drinking. After doing these, brush and floss before putting the trays back on. After eating, bits and particles of food remain in your mouth and between your teeth, and can only be removed by brushing and flossing. Failure to brush and floss can expose the aligner trays to these particles, leading to dental problems later.
Always rinse the aligners every time they are removed from the mouth
Every time the aligners are removed from the mouth, make sure to rinse with cold water and not hot water, as hot water can warp the aligners and damage the shape. Rinsing removes dried saliva and keeps them free from dirt. Also, avoid leaving your aligners out in the open when you take them out. They can serve as traps for dirt. Always keep the case handy so you can place them there when you take them out.
Soak your trays daily
To ensure a clean set of aligners daily, soak them daily in denture cleaners or Invisalign cleaning crystals. Avoid soaking in hot water or mouthwash as this can damage the aligners. Use a spare toothbrush to rid the tray of bacteria and dirt after soaking.
Tips for keeping your tray in good condition
Always remove the aligners before you eat and drink
The Invisalign aligners were not built for chewing. Wearing them when eating and drinking anything besides water can break, damage or warp their shape. They can only be worn when drinking water, but when eating anything else, they should be removed to protect them from bacteria buildup and protect your teeth from trapped food particles.
Do not clean your aligners with toothpaste
The whole point of using Invisalign clear aligners is due to its invisibility. Cleaning the aligners with toothpaste is something you should avoid at all costs. Toothpaste can damage and discolour aligner trays, making them more noticeable when you wear them.
Do not use coloured or scented soaps when cleaning your aligners
Scented soaps or coloured ones should not be used when cleaning your aligners. They leave a residual taste in the aligners afterwards, which can be very unpleasant. There are recommended aligner cleaners you can use, that have been tested and verified.
Do not leave your aligners out in the open
When you are not wearing your aligners, do not leave them out in the open. You expose them to bacteria and other materials in the air. Not only will these materials cause bad breath, but they can also make you sick. Always carry the case along with you, and place them there when you take them out. Also, remember to rinse the aligners with cold water before putting them back on.
When travelling, carry the next set of aligners with you
If you are travelling, do not forget to carry the next set of aligners along with you. Failure to do so can make you fall off track in your treatment. To avoid losing the aligners, place them in your personal bag so they can be with you at all times.
Do not clean or soak your aligners in hot water
Hot water can seriously damage your aligners if you use them for cleaning. Use cold water instead as it can preserve the plastic material that the Invisalign aligner is made from.
Proven ways to clean your Invisalign aligners
Keeping your Invisalign trays clean is paramount for a healthy smile and teeth. Below are some proven ways you can adopt for cleaning your aligner trays effectively.
Peroxide and water
You can clean your Invisalign clear aligners with hydrogen peroxide and water. Soak the Invisalign aligner in a solution containing equal parts of hydrogen peroxide and water for about 30 minutes. Brush and rinse afterwards before putting them back into your mouth.
There is a range of good quality retainer cleaners available to the public. Most of them come in a powdered or tablet form that will have to be dissolved in water to create an effective solution, while some others come in a wipe form, especially convenient for people who are always on the move. Although they may be expensive, they are worth the price.
Soap and water
A solution of unscented liquid soap in warm water is an effective cleaning solution for aligners. All you need to do is to stir the solution until it foams or until there are soap suds, and then soak the aligners for about 20 – 30 minutes. Brush afterwards and rinse to completely remove any trace of soap.
Baking soda and water
Start by mixing a tablespoon of baking soda in half a cup of water until the mixture is consistent. Soak the aligner trays in the mixture for about 60 minutes and brush thoroughly afterwards and rinse.
5. Vinegar and water
The benefits of vinegar are limitless, and cleaning aligners is one of them. To make a cleaning solution, mix one-part of white distilled vinegar with three parts of water. Soak the aligners in this solution for about 20 minutes and brush thoroughly afterwards. Rinse with cold water to remove any remaining taste of vinegar before replacing in your mouth.
Keeping your invisalign clear aligners clean only helps to make your orthodontic treatment easier and healthier. If you wish to know more tips on how to care for your aligners, call us or schedule an appointment. Visit a Invisalign clinic in London today for all your concerns and questions about invisalign.