Invisalign braces are a great alternative to traditional metal braces for anyone who is looking for a less obvious way to straighten their teeth. However, to ensure that your Invisalign aligners are working effectively and to keep your braces invisible, it is vital that you clean and care for them regularly. Here are our tips for how to clean Invisalign aligners.
Invisalign Cleaning Crystals
Most orthodontists suggest that you use Invisalign braces cleaning crystals to disinfect your aligner trays. The crystals are specially formulated to be gentle to the plastic, and they are non-abrasive to avoid scratching. The crystals work to soften built up plaque and eliminate harmful bacteria that can cause bad breath and tooth decay.
To use the crystals to clean your Invisalign aligner trays, fill the container provided with warm water and stir in one packet of cleaning crystals to dissolve them and form a cleaning solution. Submerge the aligners fully in the solution and leave them to soak for approximately 15 minutes. Remove the Invisalign aligners from the solution, and use a soft bristled brush to gently brush the trays making sure to brush all the crevices and hard to reach areas. Rinse thoroughly with lukewarm water.
Make sure to store your Invisalign braces in their storage case if you are not planning on wearing them immediately after cleaning.
Use Vinegar to clean your Braces
There are several natural alternative methods for how to clean Invisalign braces. One of the most affordable and simple ways is with vinegar. Vinegar is an acidic substance which kills bacteria and softens plaque to make it easier to remove.
To make a cleaning solution, mix 1 part white vinegar with 3 parts warm water. Immerse the Invisalign braces and leave to soak for 30 minutes. Remove from the solution and brush with a soft toothbrush. Rinse under lukewarm water.
Use distilled white vinegar and not malt, red wine or balsamic vinegar to clean your Invisalign aligners to avoid stains.
Use Baking Soda to Clean your Trays
Baking soda is another natural method for how to clean Invisalign braces. Baking soda, in addition to having antibacterial properties, also contains abrasive crystals which can effectively remove plaque from your Invisalign braces.
There are two ways of cleaning your Invisalign trays with baking soda. The first method is to form a paste with a small amount of water and use a soft bristled toothbrush to apply it to the interior and exterior of the Invisalign aligners in small circular motions, then rinse under lukewarm water.
The second method is to create a cleaning solution using 1 tablespoon of baking soda dissolved in 1 cup of warm water and submerging the Invisalign trays for 60 minutes then using a brush to remove the softened plaque. Don’t forget to rinse the trays after using baking soda as the abrasive particles can damage the enamel on your teeth.
Clean your Aligners with Hydrogen Peroxide
Hydrogen peroxide has many household and hygiene uses and is often used in a variety of dental products to whiten your teeth. This is because hydrogen peroxide is a powerful antibacterial and antiseptic agent, so it is a great way to clean your Invisalign braces.
How to clean Invisalign braces with hydrogen peroxide is simple. Combine equal parts 3% hydrogen peroxide with warm water and soak the Invisalign aligners for 15 minutes. Brush gently with a soft toothbrush and rinse under lukewarm water.
Do not use hydrogen peroxide based toothpaste or mouthwashes as the colours used in these products can discolour your Invisalign braces.
Clean your Aligners with Antibacterial Soap
An easy way to clean your Invisalign braces is with antibacterial soap. You can do this either by directly applying the soap to the Invisalign aligners and brushing with a toothbrush. Or, making a solution with warm water and soaking the Invisalign trays for 30 minutes before brushing and rinsing.
Do not use coloured or fragranced antibacterial soaps to clean your Invisalign braces as they can damage the plastic aligner trays.
Never soak or rinse your aligners in hot water in case the temperature warps the plastic, which will affect how they fit your mouth.
Proper care for your Invisalign aligners
Keeping your Invisalign braces clean and hygienic not only protects your teeth but also ensures that your Invisalign trays perform effectively. To learn more about Invisalign or how to clean Invisalign braces, call Dentistry on Solent on (02) 9158 6137.