Invisalign is a popular alternative to traditional braces and offers a discreet option for those looking to straighten their teeth. It’s important you know how to take care of your Invisalign aligners and clean them correctly in order to get optimum results.
Why is cleaning Invisalign important?
Your Invisalign aligners or trays are designed to be virtually invisible in your mouth. If you don’t clean them efficiently, over time, bacteria, food and plaque can build up inside the crevices of the trays and stain the plastic so they are no longer invisible. It’s also important for your oral health to clean them, preventing harmful bacteria from being transferred back into your mouth — cleaning your Invisalign is important for your oral health and protects your Invisalign trays from damage.
How to clean Invisalign
There are a few simple ways to clean Invisalign trays. We’ve outlined the best options here to help you clean and care for them properly:
Denture tablets are an easy and effective way of cleaning Invisalign braces. Use them regularly and these tablets will work to kill the bad bacteria that causes gingivitis and smelly breath. Here’s how to use them:
- Dissolve one pack of tablets in warm water and submerge the Invisalign trays.
- Do not use boiling water, as this can warp the Invisalign.
- Allow them to soak for 15 minutes and then remove the trays and rinse.
- Using a soft-bristled toothbrush, brush the trays gently until clean. Use one brush for your Invisalign and one for brushing your teeth.
- Rinse once more before use.
- Antibacterial soap
A mix of antibacterial soap and warm water also works to kill harmful bacteria build up on your Invisalign. Rinse the Invisalign aligners under clean water before soaking them in warm soapy water for 10-15 minutes. Brush them gently inside and out then rinse the Invisalign braces with fresh water. You may find that soaking them in a retainer cleaning solution also helps to remove any calcium build-up and to eliminate the foggy appearance.
- Baking soda
Baking soda works as both an antibacterial and abrasive treatment for your Invisalign, effectively removing plaque build-up. Dissolve one tablespoon of baking soda in a cup of warm water and soak the Invisalign for 60 minutes. Carefully using a soft toothbrush so as not to scratch the plastic, gently brush the Invisalign until clean.
The acidic content of vinegar works as a great disinfectant for your Invisalign. Make up a solution of one part white vinegar to three parts warm water and soak the Invisalign trays for 15 minutes. Rinse under clean water and gently brush away any build-up before using again. Note: malt, balsamic or red wine vinegar may stain your Invisalign aligners.
- Hydrogen peroxide
A compound often found in mouthwash, hydrogen peroxide is a strong antiseptic and antibacterial agent. While the colour of everyday mouthwash could stain your Invisalign, using hydrogen peroxide alone is a safe way of cleaning your trays. Make up a solution of equal parts hydrogen peroxide and warm water, soaking the Invisalign aligners for 30 minutes. Gently use a soft toothbrush to clean the trays before rinsing them thoroughly. We recommend only using a 3% hydrogen peroxide solution. Anything stronger may cause irritation to your teeth and gums.
How often should I clean my Invisalign?
Invisalign should be treated just like teeth and cleaned often — especially after eating and drinking. We recommend rinsing your Invisalign under clean water every time you remove them to avoid bacteria build-up and thoroughly clean them twice a day. This will not only maintain your oral health but will ensure the longevity of your trays.
To learn more about cleaning Invisalign or how Invisalign aligners can help you achieve a straighter smile, contact our experienced staff at Sydney Cosmetic Dentist. We are here to help you get your sparkly smile back!