How to clean aligners

What's the best way to care for these transparent teeth aligners? You need a gentle approach, and yet you must remove all bacteria and dirt

Our invisible supports have a lot to offer. They correct crooked teeth, tooth gaps and crowded teeth in an average time of around six months. They quickly become an inconspicuous part of our everyday life. And they're so discreet no one even notices when we're wearing them.

But what's the best way to care for these transparent teeth aligners? You need a gentle approach, and yet you must remove all bacteria and dirt. And to help clarify this, let's go into all the dos and don'ts of cleansing your teeth aligners.

How to ensure your teeth aligners stay fresh

It sounds very simple, but it really is the best and most efficient way to clean your teeth aligners properly without damaging them. All they need is some mild soap and cold to lukewarm water.

You should remove your teeth aligners before every meal and also before consuming hot or sugary drinks. The same applies if you want to light a cigarette. Use this as an opportunity to give your teeth aligners a quick clean. Brush your teeth after eating, drinking, smoking etc. and then rinse your teeth aligners with soap and water before putting them back in.

Our tip:

To ensure everything runs smoothly when you are out and about or at work, we recommend you get yourself a small bag to hold all the accessories you will need:

  • a small toothbrush

  • a small tube of toothpaste

  • a mild soap kept in a small box

  • wet wipes

  • lip balm

  • chewies

How often do I need to clean my teeth aligners?

In general, there is no hard and fast rule as to how often you should rinse your teeth aligners. However, it is advisable to get into the habit of cleaning them thoroughly every morning and evening, and after every meal. This ensures that they will always be fresh and in good condition.

Inflammation can cause an unpleasant odour

A foul smell in the mouth during teeth straightening is probably every patient's worst nightmare. In fact, the unpleasant feeling you experience when you wake up in the morning is natural and completely harmless. Small microorganisms inside our oral cavity produce gases overnight, which our saliva can only partially flush away while we sleep. That's why it is advisable to rinse your teeth aligners thoroughly with mild soap and water, especially in the morning, and carefully scrub all surfaces with a toothbrush.

If the odour tends to persist, we would recommend you visit your family dental practice. They can then clarify the precise cause and determine whether any inflammation is responsible for your symptoms. If that were to be the case, then periodontitis, for example, could also be responsible for producing an odour which could then be transferred to your teeth aligners.

Stay away! These home remedies are unsuitable for teeth aligners

Some of the strangest posts on the subject of cleansing teeth aligners are circulating on the Internet. But beware: Not all home remedies are good for your teeth aligners, and some could even be harmful to your health. We take a closer look at the most common myths.

1. Soda

Baking soda, also known by its chemical name as sodium bicarbonate, is commonly used in baking and is generally known as baking powder. However, many swear by this as a miracle cure when it comes to cleansing and managing herpes sores. Soda-based deodorants are also increasingly populating the shelves of organic and alternative, whole-food stores.

However, excessive consumption is strongly discouraged because baking soda can be the cause of increased belching, abdominal pain and flatulence. In extreme cases, it can even result in a serious illness. In addition, baking powder, sometimes called baking soda, will cause the surface of your aligners to become coarse and lose their sheen.

2. Vinegar essence and citric acid

Both these ingredients sound slightly dubious from the outset. And they certainly are if you leave your teeth aligners in such a solution for too long. What is touted in some forums as a miracle cure for plaque and similar deposits can quickly damage the thermoplastic material if used too frequently or if the solution is too strong. This can result in your aligners becoming fragile and porous – not to mention that the vinegar leaves a bad odour and also has an acrid taste.

3. Denture cleanser and toothpaste

We use toothpaste several times a day. And denture cleaner is also a common means of removing dirt and stains from dentures. So why shouldn't both also be a practical solution for teeth aligners? A bad idea! Because just like baking soda, these preparations also tarnish the surface with prolonged use.

4. Herbal baths

Whether scented with chamomile, sage or peppermint; warm herbal baths smell pleasant, but they are absolutely not recommended for cleaning teeth aligners. Firstly, they will strongly discolour the surface material and give it a yellow hue. And secondly, the heat will deform all thermoplastics.

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