Maintaining Invisalign Aligners
Invisalign Clear Aligners are such a great option when you want a straight smile without the stigma of metal braces. However, just like traditional braces, they still need to be cleaned and maintained to work properly.
We’ve got the ultimate guide with some essential tips that will help you make sure your Invisalign journey is a successful one. So, say goodbye to stained, foul-smelling aligners and hello to a sparkling, confident smile.
You already know that Invisalign is a revolutionary orthodontic treatment that has changed the way people straighten their teeth. Unlike traditional metal braces, Invisalign uses a series of clear, invisible aligners to gradually shift and straighten your smile over time. These aligners are custom-made to fit each individual’s unique dental structure, making them comfortable and virtually invisible when worn.
Why Is It Important To Keep Aligners Clean?
Because of their flush-fit nature, one of the key factors in the success of Invisalign treatment is keeping the aligners clean. Just like with any other dental appliance, it is crucial to maintain proper hygiene with Invisalign aligners to achieve optimal results as well as:
Prevent Bacteria Build-Up
As you wear your Invisalign aligners throughout the day, they come into contact with the bacteria in your saliva and mouth. If not cleaned properly, this can lead to a build-up of harmful bacteria on the surface of the aligners, which can then transfer onto your teeth and cause oral health issues such as bad breath, tooth decay, and gum disease.
Over time, if not cleaned regularly, your Invisalign aligners may become discolored and lose their clear appearance. This can be unsightly and make you feel self-conscious about wearing them.
Ensure Proper Fit
A dirty or stained set of aligners may not fit properly on your teeth which can affect the effectiveness of your treatment. This could result in extended treatment time or even require new sets of aligners altogether.
Maintain Good Oral Hygiene
Invisalign aligners are not permanently attached to your teeth, which means you can remove them for eating and oral hygiene. Keeping your aligners clean helps ensure that they do not become a breeding ground for bacteria that can cause tooth decay and other oral health issues.
Quick Overview To Keep Aligners Clean
For those who don’t have time to read a full article to get the answers you need, we get it—life is busy. Here’s a quick overview of some major tips to keep your aligners clean.
Rinse After Removal
Every time you take out your aligners, rinse them under lukewarm water to remove any saliva or plaque buildup. The more often you do this will become muscle memory and turn into a habit, a good habit.
The less chance you give for bacteria to build up the better your oral health will be. The last thing you want to do is get a straight smile and then lose some teeth due to decay from bacteria buildup.
Use a Soft Toothbrush To Clean Them
Gently brush your aligners with a soft-bristled toothbrush and clear, anti-bacterial soap or specialized Invisalign cleaning crystals. One of the key factors in keeping your Invisalign aligners clean and clear is the type of toothbrush you use. While many people may think that any toothbrush will do, using a soft-bristled brush is actually the best option for cleaning your aligners.
Unlike traditional metal braces, Invisalign aligners are made out of a smooth, plastic material. This means they can be easily scratched or damaged by harsh bristles.
Using a hard-bristled brush can create small scratches on the surface of your aligners, making them more susceptible to staining and bacteria build-up over time.
In addition to preventing damage to your aligners, soft-bristled brushes are also gentler on your gums and teeth. They provide a more comfortable brushing experience and reduce the risk of irritation or bleeding.
Always Brush And Floss Before Putting In Aligners
Maintaining clean and clear Invisalign aligners is crucial for both the health of your teeth and the success of your treatment. One important tip to keep in mind is to always brush and floss before putting in your aligners.
Brushing and flossing before inserting your aligners helps to remove any food particles or plaque that may have accumulated on your teeth throughout the day. This step is essential because any debris left on your teeth can become trapped under the aligners, leading to bacteria growth and potential tooth decay.
Flossing is equally important as it removes any food particles or bacteria from between your teeth that brushing alone may miss. When flossing with Invisalign, use a gentle back-and-forth motion between each tooth, and be careful not to disturb the alignment of any attachments or wires.
After you have thoroughly brushed and flossed, rinse out your mouth with water or an antimicrobial mouthwash. This will help eliminate any remaining bacteria that could potentially irritate your gums while wearing the aligners.
Soak in Denture Cleaner
In addition to brushing and flossing, soaking your Invisalign aligners regularly is another crucial step in maintaining their cleanliness. Soaking helps to remove any bacteria or plaque that may have accumulated on the aligners throughout the day.
There are several different options for soaking your Invisalign aligners. Some popular choices include using denture cleaners, white vinegar, or Invisalign’s own cleaning crystals. These methods work by breaking down and removing any built-up bacteria or plaque from the surface of the aligner.
To properly soak your aligners, begin by filling a small bowl with enough water to cover the entire aligner. You can then add one of the above-mentioned cleaning solutions according to its instructions. Allow your aligners to soak for the recommended amount of time, which is typically between 15-30 minutes.
Avoid Hot Water
Invisalign aligners are made from a special type of plastic called SmartTrack, which is designed to be both durable and flexible. However, this does not mean that they can withstand excessive heat. In fact, exposing your aligners to excessive heat can cause damage and compromise their effectiveness.
It is important to avoid using hot water when cleaning your aligners. Hot water can warp the plastic material, causing it to lose its shape and ultimately affecting the fit of your aligners. This may result in discomfort and hinder the progress of your treatment.
Instead, use lukewarm water when cleaning your aligners. Lukewarm water is still effective in removing bacteria and plaque from the surface of your aligners without risking any damage to them.
Keep Your Case Clean
Always store your aligners in a clean case that has been washed with soap and water regularly. This helps prevent bacteria from growing on the case and transferring onto your aligners. Never leave your aligners on the counter or in your bathroom. Doing that is almost a sure way to get bacteria built up quick.
Replace Your Aligners as Directed
Invisalign aligners are typically changed every 1-2 weeks, depending on your treatment plan. It is important to follow these instructions and replace them on schedule to ensure maximum effectiveness.
Are You Ready For A Perfect Smile?
After following all the essential tips for maintaining clean and clear Invisalign aligners, you will not only have a beautiful smile but also a healthier mouth. They’re very easy to maintain, it just requires being diligent and habitual about it.
So, if you want a perfect smile and have considered Invisalign—this is your sign to contact Epic Dental and find out if it’s right for you!