Invisalign is a modern system that utilizes a set of clear trays to correct orthodontic problems. Compared to traditional metal braces, Invisalign aligners are much more discreet and do not compromise your smile aesthetics.
Invisalign aligners are worn 20 to 22 hours daily for about a year to reposition teeth. Although they are removable and replaced every 2 weeks with a new one, they still require proper maintenance.
Pigments from food substances or other factors can cause discoloration or a cloudy appearance of the aligners. We will share the best cleaning practices and maintenance tips to keep your aligners clear and brand-new.
What is The Best Practice to Keep Your Invisalign Aligners Clean?
According to the Invisalign website, the best way to clean your aligners is to brush them gently every day and rinse them with lukewarm water. You can also use Invisalign cleaning crystals that remove stains and provide antiseptic action.
To use Invisalign crystals, add the crystals to the recommended amount of water. Soak your aligners in this solution for 15 minutes. Next, use a soft brush to clean away excess debris and rinse with water. Store them in their case afterward.
It is suggested to clean your clear aligners on a nightly basis. Lack of proper care leads to plaque buildup, staining, and foul odor. This can also hinder your smile’s appearance. So try to maintain a regular cleaning routine for your Invisalign aligners.
Cleaning Solutions for Invisalign
There are several homemade and store-bought solutions available to clean Invisalign aligners. Some of the common ones are listed as follows:
Steraligner is a special cleaning solution provided by Invisalign. It contains a mixture of sodium bicarbonate and rubbing alcohol. Steraligner comes with a tray in which you put the solution and soak your aligners for 3 to 5 minutes. It effectively cleans your aligners and sanitizes them. Rinse the solution afterward with lukewarm water.
Soap and water
It is the easiest and most convenient method to clean aligners. Mix a small quantity of liquid soap in a cup of lukewarm water. Soak your aligners in this solution for 20 to 30 minutes to get rid of food debris, plaque, and germs. Rinse them thoroughly afterward.
Baking soda and water
Baking soda cleanses and also provides antiseptic properties. Mix one tablespoon of baking soda in half a cup of water. Keep your aligners in this mixture for an hour. Rinse them later with lukewarm water.
White vinegar and water
Vinegar is another accessible product, usually found in most kitchens. Mix 3 to 4 tablespoons of white vinegar in a cup of water. Leave your aligners in this solution for 15 to 20 minutes and rinse afterward before wearing them.
What Solutions Should Not Be Used To Clean Aligners?
Invisalign aligners are made with a special material that needs gentle cleansing. Using normal cleaning products other than those mentioned above can damage your clear aligners.
Examples of some common cleaning solutions that are not safe for aligners include:
- Dishwashing soap or liquid
- Mouthwash (especially those with alcohol)
- Denture cleaners
- Soaps containing dyes
For more information about Invisalign and other orthodontic services, visit Porter Smiles Dental or call us at 281 519 7200 to schedule a consultation.