So your doctor didn’t give you a list of what and what not to eat with your clear aligners?
There’s a reason behind that! Clearly, you don’t need that list.
Unlike traditional braces, you need to remove your aligners or Invisalign to eat and drink.
It’s ok to only drink water when you are wearing them.
Did you know that?
Well, if you did not, then this article is for you.
It discusses the dos and don’ts of keeping your invisible braces clean and caring for them.
Even if you wear a set of aligners for 2 weeks, you should know how to care for them so that they are effective.
Let’s find out more below!
Do’s of Caring for Clear Aligners
1. Do Clean Your Aligners Daily
Cleaning Invisalign and other aligners daily is important for getting effective results.
If you do not clean them then the bacteria and food debris stay in contact with your teeth.
After all, you have to wear them 22 hours a day.
Either clean them in the morning or during the night.
Make sure that you clean them properly by soaking, brushing and rinsing. More on that later.
2. Brush and Floss Before You Wear Them
It is crucial to brush and floss before you put Invisalign again.
Otherwise, the bacteria and plaque stuck inside your teeth leading to oral health problems.
Therefore, during the morning and at night first, brush and floss and then proceed to wear the aligners.
3. Remove and Rinse Invisalign every time You Eat and Drink
You can only drink water when you are wearing Invisalign in Dubai, you need to remove them for everything else.
They are not meant to be consumed with food or colored drinks.
Not only will they stain but also break or get damaged.
Hence, you need to avoid damage by removing them while eating.
Also, rinse every time you have eaten and are ready to wear them back.
Rinsing will help to clean the saliva and the bacteria on the aligner.
4. Soak them Once a Day
To remove the debris properly and loosen the plaque you need to soak Invisalign into a cleansing solution at least once a day.
After that, it is easier to clean off the debris using a toothbrush.
Use a toothbrush with soft bristles that is separate from the one you use on your teeth.
This prevents the transfer of bacteria from your teeth to the aligner.
Don’ts of Caring for Clear Aligners
1. Don’t leave them out rather put them in a case
When you remove Invisalign, do not put them out in the open, rather put them in a case.
This increases the risk of forgetting and losing them.
But most importantly, it increases bacteria and dust build-up on the aligner.
Therefore, do not forget your case back home.
Always put them in a case and in case you do forget, rinse them before wearing them after eating or drinking.
Also, store the case in a cool and dry place.
A warm and damp area will increase the build-up of bacteria.
This will give them a bad smell and is unhealthy for your teeth.
2. Don’t drink colored liquids or eat anything while they are in your mouth
This is a quick way to damage your Invisalign.
Always take them out while eating or drinking.
Otherwise, you are risking staining, damage and even breaking them.
3. Don’t forget to Change Aligners regularly
You may need to change Invisalign Braces every 2 weeks.
This is crucial in adjusting the shape of your teeth and aligning them.
However, if you are planning to go on a trip, keep in mind that you will need another set soon.
Do not delay your process and ask your dentist for the new set beforehand in order to wear it on time.
4. Don’t use Scented and Colored liquids or Pastes to Clean Invisalign
Avoid using colored or scented liquid soaps as they can leave a bad taste in your mouth.
Moreover, they can stain the aligner leaving your teeth looking unpleasant when you wear them.
Therefore, there are certain things that you should avoid while cleaning the Invisalign. Learn below!
What to Avoid While Cleaning?
- Hot Water
- Abrasive Toothpaste
- Colored Mouthwash
- Scented Liquid Soap
A dishwasher is not the ideal place to clean Invisalign.
You need to be very gentle with them and also wash them in lukewarm water.
Whereas a dishwasher uses hot water that can damage the plastic material that the aligners are made of.
Moreover, hot water can change the shape of the plastic.
If the shape of the aligners changes, they are no longer useful as they are an impression of your teeth.
Hence, if you clean them with your hands, even then use slightly warm water to remove plaque.
Also, the hot water can discolor the aligner making your teeth look stained when you wear them.
You can use toothpaste on your aligner but not abrasive ones.
Abrasive toothpaste is good for removing stains on your teeth but Invisalign is more delicate than that.
Hence, they can form scratches on the surface of the aligner leaving it quite visible.
Therefore, only go for toothpaste in a small quantity and those that are not abrasive.
Chemicals such as alcohol and bleach have the tendency to not only discolor but also change the shape of the aligner.
Refrain from using them.
In fact, do not use mouthwashes with alcohol either.
Mouthwashes may look lucrative to clean the aligner but in fact, the colored ones can stain them.
Hence, only use products that are clear either it is liquid soap or mouthwash.
Speaking of soap, it is best to avoid those with scents.
The scent may seem fragrant on your hand but will leave an unpleasant taste in your mouth.
Hence, choose an unscented antibacterial liquid soap instead that you can with thoroughly.
Other than that, there are specific products that help to keep Invisalign clean.
This brings us to…
What to Choose For Cleaning?
Invisalign Cleaners are similar to retainer cleaners as both of them are removable.
However, those for dentures are not.
Retainer cleaners are usually in a tablet form that dissolves in water and has cleansing agents that help to loosen the plaque.
A popular option is Retainer Brite Tablet.
Dissolve it in warm water.
Follow that by soaking the clear aligners for 15 to 30 minutes in the water.
Rinse it afterward to clean all the debris.
This product contains a tray and sterilizing solution.
The main ingredients in the sterilizing solution are sodium bicarbonate and rubbing alcohol.
Soaking it for 3 minutes helps to clean the bacteria.
Rinse and clean it with a toothbrush to completely remove all of the debris and bacteria.
Invisalign’s Cleaning Crystals are similar to retainer cleaners.
It contains sodium sulfate that acts as a cleansing agent to get rid of all the plaque on the aligner.
Dissolve the pack containing 50 crystals into the water and put the Invisalign inside for soaking up to 15 minutes.
Next, rinse it in cool water and brush to further clean it.
Cleaning the aligner through Hydrogen Peroxide requires up to 30 minutes.
Albeit the hydrogen peroxide solution should be a low concentration one.
Mix it with equal parts of water and after soaking it for 30 minutes, rinse it thoroughly.
White Vinegar and Water
White vinegar can loosen up the plaque giving you a chance to remove it completely by brushing.
Hence first you will soak the Invisalign in a mixture of one glass of water and 1 tablespoon of white vinegar for 30 minutes.
Next, rinse it with cold or lukewarm water and then brush off the remaining plaque.
Clear Antibacterial Soap
Using a clear antibacterial soap helps to get rid of the bacteria effectively.
Mix the liquid soap in water or apply it directly.
Let the Invisalign soak into the mixture for 20 to 30 minutes or clean the bacteria using a brush.
Either way, rinse it thoroughly later.
Toothpaste can clean the bacteria as long as it does not contain abrasives.
Whitening toothpaste usually has abrasives so avoid those.
However, using baking soda is also fine separately not in toothpaste.
It will not be as harsh on the Invisalign and will get rid of the plaque.
Mix a tablespoon of baking soda in water and let the aligner soak thoroughly for 30 minutes.
Rinse and clean with a brush later.
So Summing Up
Aligners are made using 3d technology for teeth straightening and addressing moderate crowding.
In order to get the orthodontic treatment from dentists belonging to the American Association of Orthodontists or other board-certified dentists, they will first carry out a digital scan.
Then they will devise a treatment plan which can address mild to moderate alignment issues.
They will tell about the number of treatment times you will require to align, technology or appliance used to so are the aligners themselves.
So, if you have taken the decision to start using Invisalign then ensure your treatment goes successfully.
Care for your aligners and clean them thoroughly.
Do not misplace them or keep them in a damp place.
Rather store them carefully in a case.
Furthermore, clean clear aligners daily to prevent the build-up of bacteria.
These aligners are worn for 22 hours a day, hence they should be clean for good oral hygiene.
Clean them before sleeping to get rid of the bacteria that builds up all day.
Moreover, cleaning during the day helps to clear the bacteria that stays on your teeth overnight.
Remember to wear them after brushing and flossing your teeth so that you can wear them on clean teeth.
Caring for your clear aligners helps you to move to the next step of the treatment without any hindrance.
Hence, ensure that your aligners are clean to wear whenever you put them on after removing them.