Invisalign is the perfect aligner choice for many people and a valued tool by those practicing cosmetic dentistry in Utah. The nearly invisible look is very appealing. You can take them off to eat, which is a plus, and the cherry on top is that the treatment time is often shorter than braces. Invisalign is awesome, and keeping them clean is almost as easy as remembering to schedule bi-annual teeth cleanings with your Utah Family dentist.

However, there are some regular maintenance and responsibilities for patients who choose Invisalign, just like with braces. Here are some tips for cleaning those magical, clear trays that are your ticket to beautifully straight teeth.

How to Clean Invisalign so Your Teeth Don’t Decline

(Drazen Zigic/Freepik)

Tips for Cleaning Invisalign

1. Rinse and Clean Invisalign When You Wake up

Rinsing your Invisalign trays when you wake up helps clean off plaque and bacteria that naturally build up at night. Doing this simple step daily will help keep your teeth clean and prevent bad breath. Get into the habit of doing this from day one, and it will become second nature to you. Make it as big a priority as any other part of your daily routine. Start your day off right with clean teeth and clean breath.

2. Use Unscented, Clean-Rinsing Soap

Avoid cleaning your Invisalign trays with anything too harsh. Harsh cleaners can damage your Invisalign, and you know as well as we do that those things are not cheap. A clear, unscented antibacterial soap will do the trick and wash away all that nasty bacteria without ruining your aligners. You could also opt for a custom Invisalign cleaner, but a delicate, high-quality soap will work as effectively.

3. Rinse Them Everytime You Remove Them

Repeat after me: Remove and rise. There should be no removing without rinsing. The two acts should be like two peas in a pod. Conjoined twins. You get the picture. Make it a habit to rinse your aligners under warm water every time you remove them to stop bacteria from forming a yucky, dried-out film on your aligners.

4. Soak Them Twice a Week

Like you, your aligners deserve some TLC at least twice a week. Soak them in a Invisalign cleaning solution to help remove bacteria buildup. This will help to keep them clear, clean, and fresh. Try to soak them during times you’d have them off anyway, such as when you are eating or brushing, so it doesn’t cut too much into the time you should wear them. Invisalign requires 23 hours of wear daily for optimal results, so be strategic about your twice-weekly soaks.

5. Brush After Eating

One of your main goals during your Invisalign treatment journey should be to keep your teeth clean to avoid cavities and bacteria buildup. One thing you should do to meet this goal is to brush after every meal. This means carrying a travel toothbrush and toothpaste with you wherever you go. If brushing after a meal isn’t an option or you forgot your toothbrush, rinse thoroughly with mouthwash. If you don’t have access to mouthwash either, rinse thoroughly with water.

Things to Avoid When Cleaning Your Clear Aligners

Now that you know how to clean your Invisalign trays, let’s discuss some mistakes Invisalign wearers often make when cleaning their clear aligners. Here are some things not to do.

Don’t Use Colored or Scented Soap

Scented and colored soaps will likely stain your aligners and leave them tasting nasty. Stick with unscented, colorless soaps for all Invisalign cleaning.

Don’t Set Them Out in the Open

When you remove your Invisalign aligners, rinse them and set them in their case. Setting them down out in the open makes them more susceptible to bacteria, damage, and little brothers or sisters who think they look like a fun toy. In addition, keep them up high and out of reach of little ones to be on the safe side.

Don’t Use Toothpaste

It is such an innocent mistake. It seems like a good idea to use toothpaste to brush Invisalign, right? Well, we’re here to tell you otherwise. Most types of toothpaste have abrasive ingredients such as silica or baking soda. These ingredients are great for removing plaque from your teeth but not so good at being gentle on clear aligners. These abrasives can rub away at the plastic on your Invisalign trays, causing scratches, grooves, or even tears.

Don’t Use Boiling Water

We recommend using lukewarm water to rinse and clean your Invisalign clear aligners. Boiling water can warp your trays and leave long-lasting damage, delaying your treatment and potentially adding extra costs to replace the aligners. Boiling water is a great way to kill germs off other items, but not clear dental aligners.

Keeping Invisalign trays clean is an easy way to make sure your teeth and breath are happy during your teeth straightening journey. When your breath is happy, so are the people around you. No matter your life stage, your oral health should always be a top priority. Be sure to brush and floss daily and visit your Kaysville dentist every six months to keep your mouth healthy and catch any cavities or infections before they become detrimental. We love educating our patients on dental health and being a part of your smile journey.