While most people are familiar with the importance of a oral hygiene routine, many have a hard time meeting the requirements of this important daily regimen. If you’re undergoing braces treatment like Invisalign, knowing the best way to clean your teeth and aligning trays is critical to getting the results you want.
Why Oral Hygiene is the Most Important Treatment Step in Invisalign Treatment
Part of the reason why patients prefer Invisalign is because of how patient-oriented the overall treatment is. Since you get several aligning trays at a time to change out at home, it really is one of the most patient-focused treatments available. However, fewer visits to the dentist also means that the bulk of care falls on the patient.
In addition to sticking to the treatment schedule, patients are also responsible for the care of the trays and their smile. This means removing trays before eating, then thoroughly brushing and flossing teeth before putting the aligners back on. Forgetting to take out the trays before a snack makes it easier to damage the trays, which are not meant to withstand the biting pressure that can get exerted when your eat.
Drinking anything other than water while your trays are in also means that liquid can get stuck in the spaces between the aligners and your teeth. Dark or sugary liquids in particular can do the most damage to your trays, staining the clear plastic and increasing your smile’s exposure to cavity-causing sugar.
Brushing and flossing after every meal is especially important for Invisalign wearers. While Invisalign is much easier to keep clean than traditional braces, the treatment is not plaque or bacteria resistant. If you put your aligning trays back on before brushing and flossing, you create the perfect environment for plaque to accumulate. In addition to making your aligning trays smell bad and taste terrible, this can drastically increase your risk of developing cavities and gum disease.
What’s Your Routine?
Oral hygiene is important to every smile. When you’re undergoing treatment clear braces, keeping a consistent and effective oral hygiene routine will help your enjoy the most functional and cosmetic use out of your smile. To help patients keep their smiles’ healthy between visits, our Brickell orthodontist recommends the following:
- Invest in an electric toothbrush to really get into all the grooves of your moving smile.
- Floss in a c-shape around each tooth. If you have a hard time maneuvering string floss in your mouth, try using hand flossers.
- Soak your aligners in denture cleaner, Retainer Brite, or the official Invisalign cleaning crystals. If you run out and can’t make it to the store, a clear anti-bacterial soft soap works in a pinch. DO NOT use toothpaste, colored soap, or mouthwash to clean your aligners. These can cause your clear trays to change colors and are abrasive, which can create small spaces for bacteria to become trapped in.
- When eating, put your Invisalign trays in their container. Leaving them out in the open exposes them to bacteria and increases the risk of accidentally losing them. While you’re cleaning your teeth post meal, be sure to rinse and soak the trays before popping them back in.
Visit Dr. Grussmark for Invisalign in Miami, FL
Still have questions about your Invisalign treatment? Call Miami orthodontist Dr. Stephen Grussmark to learn more about caring for your clear braces and your smile during treatment. We look forward to helping you smile again!