Cleaning Your Invisalign Aligners
Invisalign takes a modern approach to straightening teeth, using a custom-made series of aligners created just for you. These aligner trays are made of smooth, comfortable, and virtually invisible plastic. Wearing the aligners will gradually and gently shift your teeth into place, based on the exact movements that Dr. Chorak plans out for you.
One of Invisalign’s biggest advantages is having the ability to take the aligners out to eat and drink. But just because you can take them out, doesn't mean they don't get dirty. Keeping your aligners clean is a vital part of your treatment, and it's the only way to keep them invisible, odorless, and free from germs. Without proper cleaning, your aligners can discolor, smell, and build up deposits of plaque and bacteria that can eat away at the enamel on your teeth.
When it comes to Invisalign, there is a difference between cleaning and rinsing. Rinsing your aligners may make them appear clean but rinsing alone does not address the unseen bacteria that can build up.
Follow these simple steps when caring for your Invisalign aligners:
- Brush Carefully: Brush your aligners with a soft-bristled toothbrush (preferably not the toothbrush you use to brush your teeth with) and gentle, clear liquid soap to remove any debris or food particles that have accumulated during the day. While toothpaste is great for your teeth, it can harm your aligners. When you brush your aligners, do so gently and without toothpaste. Also…be careful when brushing your aligners, as overzealous brushing can leave visible marks and scratches on your aligners.
- Rinse Often: Any time you take your aligners out of your mouth, rinse them thoroughly under running water. This will rinse away bacteria, saliva, and food particles.
- Brush and Floss Your Teeth: Proper oral hygiene isn't just about clean aligners; your teeth need to stay clean as well. Be sure to brush and floss your teeth regularly to prevent buildup of plaque and bacteria under the aligners.
- Store Properly: Store your aligners in their protective case whenever they aren’t in your mouth.
- Avoid Hot Water: Hot water will distort the aligner trays. It is not safe to place your Invisalign aligners into the dishwasher or in boiling water.