Invisalign aligners are clear and difficult to notice if the patient keeps them clean. This daily cleansing effort isn’t demanding, but it does require dedicated upkeep to ensure that your discreet method for straightening your smile remains discreet. Follow these cleaning tips from Dr. Brigham Baker, certified Invisalign provider at Impressions Dental in Chandler, AZ.
Invisalign Cleansing Goals
There are several reasons cleaning Invisalign aligners is so important:
- Prevent stains: Invisalign is made clear, but it will only stay nearly invisible if it isn’t discolored by foods and drinks. Only eating when the aligners are out of your mouth and keeping up with an oral hygiene routine will help keep the plastic clear.
- Avoid odors: If gunk of any kind builds up on your trays, they will start to smell. You won’t want to put the aligners back in your mouth if they stink, which interferes with the effectiveness of treatment, and their smelliness can contribute to bad breath if you do pop them in.
- Stop cavities: When food and bacteria are caught between tooth enamel and trays, they can fester and eventually lead to cavities. No one wants a setback in Invisalign treatment because they need to deal with a tooth-colored filling.
Best Invisalign Cleaning Practices for Meals
When you remove your aligners for a meal, it’s a good idea to follow these steps:
- Rinse the trays with water before you store them in the case. This effort removes saliva and bacteria, so it doesn’t sit on the trays waiting to latch onto your teeth.
- Brush and floss your teeth before putting the aligners back in.
- Rinse the aligners again before you put them back in your mouth.
Nighttime Invisalign Cleansing Routine
Your Chandler Invisalign provider will recommend an aligner-safe cleaning solution so you can soak Invisalign trays nightly. It’s also a good idea to brush the trays – though not with toothpaste – to get them as clean as possible.
Don’t Forget About the Rest of Your Smile
When you clean your Invisalign aligners, clean your teeth too. Your entire smile is being treated by this orthodontic alternative, so pay attention to everything that’s going on, including:
- Teeth: That’s right, your teeth. Brush them well and brush them often. Floss too. This is a twice-a-day activity, at a minimum but ideally happens after every meal too.
- Attachments: Many Invisalign patients have attachments on their teeth, small composite tooth-colored shapes that help the aligners hold on more firmly. They will only stay enamel-colored and unnoticeable if you brush them carefully every time you brush.
- Case: The case that houses your Invisalign aligners when they aren’t in your mouth is only as clean as you make it. When you’re putting aligners in and out of the case regularly, it’s important to give the case a good washing regularly too.
Daily Invisalign Cleaning Ritual
Invisalign wearers must clean their aligners every day, ideally multiple times a day. Though many people argue that cleaning their trays so diligently is overkill because you’re going to switch them out in two weeks anyway, it’s important to keep the aligners as clean and clear as possible to keep them invisible and keep your treatment on track.
Keep your method simple:
- Scrub the trays with a soft-bristled toothbrush and clear, unscented soap.
- Soak aligners regularly in the recommended Invisalign crystals.
- Follow a routine that works for your daily schedule, so you’ll always prioritize Invisalign.
It really is easy to clean Invisalign aligners. Your teeth will thank you and you’ll be proud of your efforts to contribute to your straight smile. If you have any questions about best practices, contact Impressions Dental in Chandler.