More than 4 million people worldwide have used Invisalign to straighten their teeth.
If you’re exploring different teeth straightening options, speak to your dental care specialist about Invisalign. It’s the least visible and least invasive choice.
While Invisalign aligners are easier to adapt to than traditional braces, you may still need guidance on how to properly maintain your plastic trays. Check out this quick guide on how to clean and care for your clear aligners.
For best results, you should wear your aligners for 22 hours every day. During this time, food particles can become stuck to the trays. The best way to clean your clear aligners is by gently brushing them with a soft-bristled toothbrush.
Don’t add any toothpaste to the brush as it is abrasive and will scuff the surface of your trays. When you’ve finished, rinse the aligners in room temperature water. Avoid using hot water as it may warp the plastic.
A gentle brushing will remove food particles, but you also need to get rid of bacteria. This is done by soaking your aligners in a special solution. Since you can only take your trays out for 2 hours a day, this solution works fast to remove any germs or bacteria that may be clinging to your aligners.
You can also wash your trays using a clear anti-bacterial soap. Don’t use colored soaps or other unapproved cleaning products as they may stain the plastic.
Remove Trays When Eating
You must take out your aligners before you eat or drink anything. If you don’t, food and drink become trapped against your teeth, accelerating tooth decay and causing bad breath.
Your aligners are very thin, so biting down on food can damage or crack the plastic. Food and drink can also stain the aligners, ruining the clear plastic finish. The good news is, as long as you remove your trays first, you can eat and drink as normal.
For more info about eating with aligners, check out this Invisalign foods guide.
Always store your aligners in a protective retainer case. The thin plastic trays are pretty fragile, so if you drop them or leave them lying around, they are very likely to break. To be safe, keep a spare case at home, in your bag, or at the office, so you always have one on hand.
No matter how careful you are, accidents happen. Ordering a new set of trays can take up to a week, during which time your teeth may start to shift, undoing any progress you’ve made. To prevent this from happening, keep your previous set of trays handy. You can wear them while waiting for a replacement tray.
Set a Schedule
Aligners straighten your teeth by slowly pushing them into the correct position. New trays are particularly tight and can cause some pain. We recommend putting new trays in just before you go to bed so that you can sleep through the discomfort.
Depending on your treatment plan, you’ll most likely have to change Invisalign trays every two weeks or so. If you’re going on vacation, book a dentist visit so you can collect your next few sets of aligners in advance.
Take Care of Your Clear Aligners, and They’ll Take Care of You
Having your teeth straightened is never a fun process but, with the proper knowledge, maintaining your clear aligners is a breeze. All the discomfort and effort will be worth it when you can show off a straight set of pearly white teeth!
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