What's the Best Way to Clean Clear Aligners?

how to clean clear aligners
credit: Diana Polekhina

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If you use clear aligners to straighten your teeth, you know they require special care to keep them clean and hygienic. Proper cleaning is essential to maintain your aligners’ clarity, prevent discoloration and odor, and keep your teeth healthy. Let’s learn how to clean aligners and keep them in tip-top shape.

Why Is Cleaning Clear Aligners Important?

how to clean clear retainers
credit: Diana Polekhina

Clear aligners, like Eon Aligner, are made of a medical-grade thermoplastic material that is virtually invisible and provides a comfortable fit. However, this material is also porous and prone to absorbing bacteria and food particles. If you don’t clean your aligners properly, these particles can build up on your aligners, leading to bad breath, discoloration, and bacterial growth.

Moreover, failing to clean your aligners can put your dental health at risk. Bacteria buildup can lead to gum disease, tooth decay, and bad breath and can even cause your aligners to become misshapen or damaged.

The Best Way to Clean Clear Aligners

how to clean invisalign
credit: Diana Polekhina

The best way to clean clear aligners is by using a specialized cleaning solution, mild soap, and lukewarm water. It is not recommended to use toothpaste or mouthwash as they can scratch the aligners or discolor them.

Cleaning Solution

Several cleaning solutions on the market are specifically designed for clear aligners, such as Retainer Brite and Invisalign Cleaning Crystals. These solutions can be found at most drug stores or online.

To use the cleaning solution, dissolve the tablet in lukewarm water, place the aligners in the solution for the recommended time, and rinse with water before wearing them again.

Soap and Water

1. If you prefer a more natural approach, clean your aligners using mild soap and lukewarm water.
2. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and gently scrub the aligners.
3. Rinse with water before wearing them again.
4. Use a mild soap, as harsh soaps or detergents can damage the aligners.

Dos and Don’ts of Cleaning Clear Aligners

When cleaning clear aligners, there are some dos and don’ts to remember to ensure they stay clean and odor-free.

• Clean your aligners daily: Make sure to clean your aligners at least twice a day to prevent bacteria buildup.
• Use a soft-bristled toothbrush: Use a soft-bristled toothbrush to avoid scratching the aligners.
• Use lukewarm water: Use lukewarm water to prevent warping the aligners.
• Soak your aligners in a cleaning solution, or use mild soap and water to clean them thoroughly.
• Store your aligners properly: When not wearing them, store them in their case to prevent loss or damage.

• Use toothpaste or mouthwash: Toothpaste and mouthwash can scratch or discolor the aligners.
• Use hot water: Hot water can warp the aligners and affect their fit.
• Leave your aligners out in the open: Leaving your aligners out in the open can expose them to bacteria and other germs.
• Use abrasive cleaners: They can scratch the aligners, making them more prone to bacteria buildup and staining.

Additional Tips for Maintaining Good Oral Hygiene

how to care for clear aligners
credit: Diana Polekhina

In addition to cleaning your clear aligners, there are some additional tips you can follow to maintain good oral hygiene during orthodontic treatment.

• Brush and floss regularly: Brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss daily to prevent cavities and gum disease.
• Avoid sugary and acidic foods and drinks: Sugary and acidic foods and beverages can cause tooth decay and enamel erosion.
• Rinse your mouth after eating or drinking: If you can’t brush your teeth after eating or drinking, rinse your mouth with water to remove any food particles or residue.
• Visit your dentist regularly: Visit your dentist regularly for checkups and cleanings to maintain good oral health.