Best Way to Clean Invisalign
Are you on a journey towards a straighter smile with Invisalign? Keeping your aligners clean and maintaining excellent oral hygiene is key to achieving the best results. Not only does proper cleaning prevent bacterial growth and plaque buildup, but it also ensures your aligners stay fresh, odor-free, and comfortable. In this article, we'll dive into the top-notch techniques for cleaning your Invisalign aligners, including some ingenious on-the-go solutions, deep-cleaning methods using ultrasonic machines and cleaning crystals, and even some natural remedies. Get ready to discover the secrets to a sparkling smile and a healthier mouth!
Why is it important to clean Invisalign and improve your oral hygiene
Preventing bacterial growth: Bacteria can accumulate on the aligners throughout the day as you wear them. If not cleaned properly, these bacteria can multiply and lead to bad breath, gum inflammation, and potential oral infections. Regular cleaning helps eliminate bacteria and minimizes the risk of oral health issues.
Preventing plaque buildup: Invisalign aligners fit tightly around your teeth to guide movement but they also reduce saliva contact. If you eat sugary or acidic food, your saliva is less likely to touch your teeth and it could increase tartar buildup. Tartar could be both on your teeth and your aligner trays, which makes keeping oral hygiene more important.
Avoiding odors and bad breath: If you don't clean your aligners regularly, they can develop an unpleasant odor and leave a bad taste in your mouth. This can be unappealing and affect your overall oral hygiene experience. Proper cleaning helps eliminate any unpleasant odors and ensures a fresh feeling when wearing the aligners.
Prolonging the life of the aligners: Invisalign aligners are designed to be worn for a specific duration determined by your orthodontist. Regular cleaning helps maintain the integrity of the aligners, preventing damage, and extending their lifespan. This ensures that your treatment progresses smoothly without interruptions due to broken or worn-out aligners.
How often to clean Invisalign
To maintain optimal hygiene and ensure the effectiveness of your Invisalign, Byte, or Smile Direct clear aligners, it is important to establish a regular cleaning routine. While cleaning your aligners at least twice a day is a good general guideline, there are specific moments when cleaning becomes particularly crucial.
- Morning cleaning: Cleaning your aligners in the morning, immediately after waking up when you brush your teeth, helps eliminate any bacteria or debris that may have accumulated overnight. This step ensures that you start the day with clean aligners and a fresh mouth.
- After mealtime cleaning: One of the unique advantages of clear aligners is their removability, allowing you to enjoy meals and snacks without obstruction. However, it is essential to clean your aligners every time you remove them to eat or drink anything other than water. This practice prevents food particles, sugars, and acids from remaining trapped between your aligners and teeth for an extended period. Cleaning after each meal minimizes the risk of plaque buildup, bad breath, and potential oral health issues.
- Evening cleaning: Before going to bed, make sure to clean your aligners thoroughly. This step removes any accumulated plaque, bacteria, or stains from the day. Cleaning your aligners before sleep sets the stage for a hygienic night and prepares your aligners for uninterrupted use while you sleep.
How to Clean Invisalign Aligners
Deep Cleaning with an ultrasonic machine & Invisalign cleaning crystals or tablets
Deep cleaning Invisalign aligners with an ultrasonic machine and Invisalign cleaning crystals or tablets can provide a thorough and effective cleaning. Here's a step-by-step guide:
- Fill the ultrasonic machine with water. Avoid using hot water, as it can warp the aligners.
- Add Invisalign cleaning crystals or tablets: These specialized cleaning products are designed to break down plaque and remove stains from your aligners.
- Place the aligners in the machine: Place your Invisalign aligners into the water-filled ultrasonic machine, ensuring that they are fully submerged. Place your aligner trays downward as it allows the cleaning solution and ultrasonic waves to reach the inside and outside surfaces of the aligners more effectively.
- Turn on the machine: Switch on the ultrasonic machine, and let it run for around 5 to 10 minutes while you brush your teeth. The ultrasonic vibrations will create tiny bubbles that help to dislodge plaque and debris from the aligners' surfaces.
- Rinse the aligners: Once the cleaning cycle is complete, remove the aligners from the ultrasonic machine. Rinse them thoroughly with lukewarm water to remove any residue from the cleaning solution. Again, avoid hot water.
Clean Invisalign on the GO
Let’s face it. There’s not always a clean bathroom available for you to brush your teeth and aligners when you’re on the go. You might be on a road trip, an international flight, a camping trip, a boat tour, a bachelorette party, a music festival or working in a construction site with only porta potties. And it’s completely normal not wanting to take out your trays because you don’t want to drop it. But it is definitely not a good idea to skip a meal because of the inconvenience. So how do you clean your clear aligners and your teeth when you’re on the go?
- Aligner cleaner foam: Aligner cleaner foams are specifically designed for on-the-go use. These Invisalign foam cleaner often come in convenient, travel-sized packaging and can effectively clean your aligners without requiring water or rinsing. All you need to do is pump the foam cleaning solution on your aligners, let it sit for a few minutes and you’re good to go.
- Disposable toothbrushes: Keep disposable toothbrushes and travel-sized toothpaste in your bag. These compact brushes are designed for single-use and can be discarded after brushing, eliminating the need for running water. However, since the toothbrushes are plastic and only for one time use, it is definitely an eco-friendly choice.
- Travel size mouthwash or mouth spray: Carry alcohol-free mouthwash or mouth spray that can freshen your breath and provide temporary oral hygiene benefits when brushing is not possible.
- Rinse with water or bottled water: If you can find a clean water source or have access to bottled water, rinsing your mouth and aligners can help remove debris temporarily.
- Brush afterwards: When you have access to a clean bathroom and running water, make sure to thoroughly brush your teeth and clean your aligners as per the recommended guidelines.
The Fizzy 3-in-1 Aligner Cleaner, Mouthwash & Toothpaste offers a convenient solution that combines the benefits of the mentioned methods for on-the-go oral hygiene. This innovative product provides multiple benefits in a single package.
- Clean your Invisalign aligners: Fizzy 3-in-1 cleaner clean your aligners effectively, helping to remove plaque, stains, and bacteria. It is the perfect way to clean your Invisalign on-the-go as it doesn’t need water for rinsing, making it ideal for situations where a clean bathroom is not readily available.
- Mouthwash: Fizzy Invisalign cleaner can also be used as mouthwash. You can use it to freshen your breath, as a temporary solution for maintaining oral hygiene on the go. It contains Xylitol which is effective at preventing tartar buildup and is also alcohol free for sensitive mouth.
- Toothpaste: Additionally, the Fizzy 3-in-1 retainer cleaner can be used as a foam toothpaste, offering a gentle and effective cleaning of your teeth. It helps remove food particles and plaque, maintaining your dental health and preventing bad breath.
Do’s and Don’ts about cleaning your Invisalign
When cleaning your Invisalign aligners, there are certain things you can do and certain things you should avoid to ensure their proper care and maintenance. Here are some “do’s” and "don'ts" to keep in mind:
- Use soft bristle toothbrush to avoid scratching the surface of your trays. You should use soft bristle toothbrush for your teeth too since you might be brushing multiple times a day and soft bristle toothbrushes are milder to your gum.
- Don't use abrasive toothpaste: Abrasive toothpaste and can scratch or damage the aligner surface and all the invisible small cuts on your trays make it more likely to harbor bacteria.
- Don't use hot water: Steer clear of using hot water to clean your aligners. High temperatures can warp or deform the aligners, compromising their fit and effectiveness. Stick to lukewarm water for rinsing and cleaning.
- Don't use colored mouthwash: If you don’t want your aligners to turn pink, purple or blue, stay away from any colored mouthwash.
- Don’t use alcohol or products containing alcohol to clean your Invisalign as they make the plastic brittle or less transparent.
Can you use hydrogen peroxide to clean Invisalign?
You can use hydrogen peroxide to clean Invisalign with some caveats:
- Dilution: Hydrogen peroxide should always be diluted before use. The recommended concentration for oral use is typically 1.5% to 3%. Using higher concentrations can be harmful and may cause irritation or damage to oral tissues. Dilute the hydrogen peroxide with water according to the instructions provided by the manufacturer or your dental professional.
- Rinse thoroughly: After using hydrogen peroxide to clean your aligners, make sure to rinse them thoroughly with water. This will help remove any residual hydrogen peroxide from the aligners, reducing the risk of oral irritation.
- Do not use hydrogen peroxide if you have a sensitive mouth as it can cause temporary tingling or burning sensations in the mouth.
How to clean Invisalign retainers with baking soda?
To clean your Invisalign retainers with a baking soda, you can follow these steps:
- Mix one tablespoon of baking soda with a half cup of lukewarm water. Stir it until the baking soda is fully dissolved.
- Soak the retainers in the baking soda solution for about 15 to 30 minutes.
- Brush gently: Take a soft-bristled toothbrush and gently brush the retainers. Make sure you reach all the surfaces of you Invisalign retainers.
- Rinse thoroughly: Rinse the retainers under lukewarm water to remove the baking soda solution completely. Make sure to rinse off any residue from the retainers, ensuring they are clean and free from any lingering taste or particles.
How to clean Invisalign retainers with vinegar?
White vinegar is a common homemade retainer cleaner. It is not as effective as Invisalign foam cleaner or cleaning crystals but it’s so easily available and low-cost.
- Mix equal parts of white vinegar and lukewarm water in a container.
- Take out your Invisalign retainers and rinse them with lukewarm water.
- Soak the retainers in the vinegar solution for 15 to 30 minutes.
- Gently brush the retainers with a soft-bristled toothbrush to remove any remaining debris.
- Rinse the retainers thoroughly with lukewarm water to remove the vinegar solution.
Proper cleaning of Invisalign aligners is crucial for maintaining good oral hygiene and ensuring their effectiveness. Regular cleaning helps prevent bacterial growth, plaque buildup, bad breath, and extends the life of the aligners. Cleaning should be done at least twice a day, in the morning and before bed, and after each meal. Ultrasonic machines and cleaning crystals or tablets can provide a deep cleaning for the aligners. When on the go, using foam cleaners, disposable toothbrushes, mouthwash, or rinsing with water can help maintain oral hygiene. The Fizzy 3-in-1 Aligner Cleaner, Mouthwash & Toothpaste offers a convenient solution. Avoid abrasive toothpaste, hot water, colored mouthwash, and alcohol-based products. Hydrogen peroxide can be used but should be diluted and rinsed thoroughly. Baking soda and vinegar can also be used as homemade retainer cleaning. Following these cleaning methods ensures clean and fresh Invisalign aligners for effective treatment and oral health.