First Line Dental is a 42 North Dental Care, PLLC practice and is owned and operated by dentists Dr. Samuel Shames, DDM. and Dr. Ronald Weissman, DDM. First Line Dental is supported by 42 North Dental, LLC, a dental support organization that provides non-clinical administrative and business support services to the practice. 42 North Dental, LLC does not own or operate the dental practice or employ dentists to provide dental services. Find more information about 42NorthDental, LLC and the dental practices it supports at 42northdental.com.
Essentially, there are three keys to successful Invisalign treatment. You must comply with your dentist’s instructions for wearing the aligners, maintain proper oral hygiene throughout your treatment course, and keep your aligners clean. This post focuses on how you can keep your aligners clean. Following these tips will benefit your oral health and prevent you from suffering from problems like bad breath, stains on your aligners, and an accumulation of harmful oral bacteria on your teeth.
Regularly Rinse Your Aligners
When you remove your aligners to eat a meal or for a special occasion, give them a quick rinse. Be sure the water is not too hot because extreme temperatures can warp the plastic. Simply running the aligners under water each time you remove them is important because doing so prevents dry saliva and plaque from creating a breeding ground for foul-smelling bacteria.
Soak Your Aligners
Invisalign sells cleaning crystals that you can use to soak your aligners, which will keep them clean and stop them from looking foggy or dull. There are a number of effective alternatives to the cleaning crystals, such as a denture soaking solution or EverSmile WhiteFoam (which also has a mild teeth whitening effect). If you ever run out of the solution you regularly use to soak your aligners, you can simply mix equal parts of lukewarm water and white distilled vinegar. For best results, you should soak your aligners for 15- 30 minutes each day.
Brush Your Aligners
It is a wise practice to brush your aligners once or twice a day. However, you should not use the same toothbrush and toothpaste you use for brushing your teeth. Most toothpastes are slightly abrasive, which means you could accidentally scratch your aligners. You should also avoid any cleaning substances that might stain your aligners, such as colored soap. It is best to use the softest toothbrush you can find (perhaps a baby toothbrush) and a clear, antibacterial soap.
Keep Your Teeth Clean
When you eat a meal, small food particles and bacteria may cling to your teeth. If you reinsert your aligners without properly cleaning your mouth, Invisalign will trap those substances against your teeth, thus increasing the risk of tooth decay and bad breath. Keep a toothbrush, floss, and toothpaste with you so you can freshen up your mouth after each meal before you put your aligners back in.
The above tips will help you keep your aligners fresh and functional throughout your Invisalign treatment. If you would like even more specific direction on how to make a success out of your teeth straightening journey, your cosmetic dentist or orthodontist would be pleased to help.
About the Author
Dr. Ji Young Lim is the on-staff orthodontist at First Line Dental. She provides Invisalign and a number of other treatments that are designed to help patients achieve straighter, healthier, and more attractive teeth. If you would like to learn more about Invisalign, or if you are ready to schedule an orthodontic consultation, contact our team at 860-327-5990.