Today, we’re going to change subjects from our local business reviews to get back to our discussion on dental health and clear braces. One of the great things about Invisalign is that it requires less maintenance than traditional braces. You don’t have to go into the office for routine wire adjustments, and you don’t have to get special tools and floss to thread between your brackets.
You simply pop out your Invisalign tray and go about your regular dental health routine. One of the minor maintenance tasks of Invisalign is keeping your trays clean. There are a number of ways you can keep your Invisalign trays clean and clear, as well as some little steps you can take to keep your trays from harboring bacteria.
4 Tips for Keeping your Invisalign Trays Pristine
While it’s not hard to maintain your Invisalign aligners, you’ll still need to make sure you’re taking care of them, so they pose a risk on your dental health. Invisalign aligners are replaced every 2 weeks, so it’s not a huge deal if your aligners get a little dull.
However, bacterial buildup can discolor your Invisalign trays and cause tooth decay, which defeats the purpose of Invisalign. Not to mention, they can make your trays smell bad, and the last thing you want is Invisalign induced halitosis. Here are some things to remember when it comes to keeping your Invisalign clean:
- Clean your aligner every day. Set an alarm to clean your aligner or clean them when you brush your teeth at night. Make cleaning your aligners a part of your dental routine. Don’t skip a day of cleaning your Invisalign trays. If you don’t have time to scrub your trays with a toothbrush and toothpaste, buy special cleaning products intended for clear braces. Cleaning your aligners daily will prevent bacterial buildup and keep your trays free from smell.
- Use a simple toothpaste and toothbrush. The best way to clean your aligners is by keeping it simple. Some cleaning products are known to turn aligners yellow. To clean your aligners, all you have to do is gently scrub them with a small amount of toothpaste, being careful to not scratch away the aligner. Some orthodontists recommend denture or retainer tablets; however, Invisalign doesn’t recommend this method. You can try the Invisalign crystals that are made specifically to keep the clear braces translucent. There are also ultrasonic cleaners on the market, which use a vibration to shake loose food or bacteria in the aligners. The latter can be costly, so we would recommend sticking with the old fashioned method. Make sure that you give them a good rinse after cleaning, before putting them back in your mouth.
- Keep your teeth clean. The best way to keep your trays clean is by making sure that you keep your teeth pristine after every meal. Trapped food that leeches out of your teeth and into your trays are the biggest cause of plaque buildup in your aligners. Make sure that you floss and brush after every meal and follow a rigorous dental health routine. Otherwise, the leftover food will be trapped in between the tray and your saliva, which can lead to tooth decay and plaque buildup on your teeth.
- Don’t eat with your Invisalign trays in. In the beginning, your Invisalign trays will feel tight on your teeth. You might be tempted to snack without taking the aligners out. Eating with your Invisalign in is not a good idea for a number of reasons. For one, putting a bite force on your tray could cause you to crack or chew a hole through the aligner. This damage can affect the way the aligner fits your teeth and ruin its ability to do its job.Trying to chew with Invisalign is will also make food get stuck to your aligners, which will look ridiculous and stain your aligner. Not to mention, you’ll still need to remove your aligners to clean them. If you don’t clean your aligner, you can expect unsightly and smelly plaque buildup. This plaque puts you at a direct risk for cavities.
All in all, Invisalign doesn’t require much upkeep. All you need to do is make sure that you clean your aligners daily, don’t eat with them in, and maintain a rigorous dental health routine. You can keep checking on our blog for insider dental health tips that will help you keep your pearly, and soon to be straight, teeth cavity-free.