If you have orthodontic treatment that uses clear plastic aligners, such as Invisalign, you need to take good care of the aligners. Often referred to as retainers, these aligners are helping to adjust your teeth and gradually move them into the correct position. If you don't take good care of them, you may end up paying more to have them replaced. Here are some tips for keeping those aligners clean until you are ready for the next set.
Rinse the Retainers after Brushing Your Teeth
Regular cleaning of your retainers will ensure they remain free of bacteria and in good condition. When you remove your retainers, set them aside and brush your teeth thoroughly, followed by flossing. Once your teeth are cleaned, pick up your retainers and rinse them with tepid water only. The retainers are made from rein, which is a type of plastic. If the water is too hot, it could start distorting the retainers. Tepid is the best temperature when rinsing and cleaning the retainers.
Clean the Retainers Thoroughly
After you have rinsed your retainers, get out your toothbrush and toothpaste to clean them. You should clean them in a similar fashion to when you brush your teeth. Use small circular motions on all parts of the retainer, being sure to get every inch. Even if they look clean, they could have food particles, germs, and bacteria that can spread in your mouth and cause dental problems. When you are sure they are clean, rinse them once more with tepid water.
As you are cleaning the retainers, inspect them to look for any signs of calcium build-up. They can get tartar just like your teeth, so it is important that you keep them clean. If you see the tartar build-up, it will need to be removed by your dentist. They might order a new set of retainers for you to wear.
Clean the Retainer Container
During the course of your orthodontic treatment, you will be given multiple sets of retainers. Every time you get a new set, clean out the retainer case thoroughly. It is important that you keep that case cleaned as it can collect bacteria just like the retainers themselves. By cleaning it regularly, you remove the bacteria and keep it from spreading to the new set of aligners. For more information about Invisalign or clear plastic retainers, talk to a professional like Aspen Orthodontics.