4 Top Tips On How To Clean and Maintain Your Clear Aligners.
(Plus 2 Bonus Tips... because we're generous like that - you're welcome 😏)
With innovative advancements in orthodontics, achieving the perfect smile is no longer a daunting process. Clear Aligners are easy to use, practically invisible and can treat most teeth alignment issues. With the right guidance by your local dentist or orthodontist, treatment is considered safe, comfortable, and may even be faster than traditional methods. However, clear aligners do require care and attention in order to maximise their effect.
Here are a few simple steps you can do daily to keep aligners clean, clear and odour-free.
Tip #1 - Clean and rinse aligners daily
Your aligners could build up an unpleasant odour and you may have to deal with bacteria buildup. To prevent discolouration, make sure that whenever you remove your aligners, you rinse them thoroughly. This ensures that harmful plaque does not build up on the aligners which could harm your teeth when worn. Ideally, aligners should be washed daily with clean, lukewarm water and rinsed in the morning, before bedtime and after every meal or drink. Use a soft-bristle toothbrush (not the same as the brush you use for your teeth) and mild soap. This will easily remove any food particle residue and keep your aligners looking fresh and clear. Routinely cleaning your aligners just as you would brush/floss every morning and night will keep them free from bacteria, plaque, and funky odours.
Tip #2 - Brush and floss before reinserting aligner
Unlike metal braces, with clear aligners, you don’t have to worry about food getting stuck in your brackets while eating. But food can still get stuck in and between your teeth and the aligner. Wearing aligners without brushing and flossing could lead to bacteria and plaque formation in the aligners. So, maintaining oral hygiene before reinserting your aligners is essential to avoiding dental health issues including decay and gum diseases.
Tip #3 - Do not wear aligners when consuming food or drinks
Do not eat or drink while wearing clear aligners. Not only are clear aligners not built for the pressure of eating, but food and drink can also get stuck between the aligners and your teeth, leading to plaque formation and tooth decay. So remember to remove your aligners before you munch down on any tasty meals. Some food and drinks also tend to have colouring agents that could tarnish the transparency of the aligners. To avoid staining, do not consume coloured beverages (like tea, coffee or red wine) while wearing clear aligners. Water should be the only thing you consume while wearing your aligners.
Tip #4 - Consider getting an aligner-care kit
Once you wear clear aligners, they become a part of your daily routine. Clear aligners need care no matter where you go, especially if you are eating out or travelling. So it's a good idea to keep a dental travel kit handy with an aligner case, an aligner removal tool, floss, mouthwash, toothbrush and toothpaste. The adjustments your mouth endures during clear aligner treatment may irritate your teeth and gums, so the journey to your perfect smile may not always be a walk in the park. As we all know, when it comes to comfortable orthodontic treatments, it's all about the accessories! This is why we've curated six essential items and put them all in one convenient HomeCare Kit so you can enjoy all the perks of your smile journey.
Bonus Tips - Things to avoid
• Avoid using scented or coloured soaps to clean aligners
Any coloured items should be kept well away from your clear aligners. This includes soft drinks, food colouring and coloured soaps. Using coloured soaps would not only cause discolouration, but they could also damage the aligners. At that point, your “clear” aligners would not be that “clear” anymore. They could also give off a displeasing taste that would make it difficult for you to place the aligners in your mouth for extended periods.
• Avoid using toothpaste to clean aligners
Toothpaste is not meant for cleaning your clear aligners. They can leave scratches on the aligner surface, which will ultimately lead to discolouration. Ideally, clear aligners should be cleaned with cleaning tablets or minimal soap and rinsed well with lukewarm water.
Orthodontic treatment using clear aligners require consistency and discipline. The aligners need to be worn for at least 20-22 hours every day for effective results. Keeping track of a daily schedule and maintaining a proper cleaning routine are key to successfully achieving straight teeth and a beautiful smile.
Interested in our HomeCare Kits? Learn more here
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