Over the last few years, aligners have become sought-after dental products for individuals struggling with dental issues. Thanks to these technological wonders, you can straighten your teeth in less time than using traditional orthodontics. Let’s see tips to maintain and care for your aligners.
Aligners are designed to simplify and improve the efficiency of a correction process. It’s important to understand that purchasing an aligner may leave a massive dent in your hard-earned saving. For this reason, you should learn how to properly care for and maintain your aligner for the longest time possible.
What Is An Aligner?
A teeth aligner is a correction device in the dental world. It’s made up of a removable plastic tray that becomes almost invisible when worn. This technology is customizable to perfectly fit one’s teeth as it’s developed from your 3D dental scan.
How Often Should You Change Your Aligners?
Depending on the manufacturer, one set of aligners should be worn between 20 to 22 hours per day for two weeks. After two weeks, you’re supposed to change to another slightly different set of aligners on your collection. For this reason, it’s essential to learn Invisalign aligner care or for any other type of aligner you’re using to avoid wearing a smelly or stained device for two weeks.
Tips To Maintain And Care For Aligners
1. Proper Storage
Proper storage is one of the best tips to care for and maintain your aligners. Some of the ways to properly store your aligners include:
- Storing them in their respective cases – Most people may tend to leave their aligners on tables, car seats, etc. However, the best thing to do is to store them in their cases. This makes it easier for you to find them whenever needed. It’ll also protect them from damages, saving you from incurring unnecessary costs. Storing aligners in their cases plays a huge role in keeping off bacteria that may infect your teeth, leading to other dental-related issues.
- Soaking your aligners – This is another storage tip you should utilize, especially when you’re eating. It involves soaking your device in denture cleaner or a combination of vinegar and water to help kill bacteria and prevent bad smells. Make it a habit to soak your trays in these mixtures for at least 30 minutes each day.
- Storing them in high places – This is a safety tip, especially if you have young kids or pets at home. They might be fascinated by these aligners, and this increases your chances of losing them. So, by storing them in high open-proof safes will make it hard for your furry friends or kids to access them.
2. Proper Hygiene And Cleaning
Throughout the day, germs and other bacteria can accumulate in your mouth, leading to a bad smell. Thus, it’s essential to regularly clean your aligners every time you’re flossing and brushing your teeth. Some of the cleaning tips you may use include:
- Use a toothbrush – Use a soft toothbrush to remove food particles and any other buildup in your aligner. This prevents the accumulation of odor-smelling bacteria, ensuring you have a fresh breath most of the day.
- Use aligner cleaning solutions – Most makers of aligners provide a cleaning crystal that you can use to clean your device properly. You can easily dissolve them in water, in which you can soak your aligner to destroy all the bacteria that might accumulate on your teeth correction device.
If you’re unsure of what cleaning agent to use, visit your dentist to learn about the recommended mixture you may use to maintain the hygiene of your aligners.
3. Avoid Abrasive Materials
While it’s important to clean your aligners, you should know that some ingredients may damage your aligners rather than maintain them. Some of the things you should avoid using on your aligners include:
- Toothpaste – This compound is designed to clean your teeth and not your aligners. Some chemicals in toothpaste may stain or discolor your aligner, making it hard for you to have that smile you’re anticipating for.
- Hot water – An aligner is made of plastic material, and using hot water while cleaning may expand and contract the tray, affecting its size.
- Drinks – Apart from water, drinks such as tea will discolor or stain your aligner. Thus, it’s important to remove it before you take most drinks.
- Food Particles – This is another thing you should avoid. Any food particle stuck on your aligner may lead to bacteria buildup and staining. Before taking your meal, it’s important to remove your aligner and store it properly.
As discussed above, it’s crucial to take good care of your aligners to ensure they serve their purpose. Some tips to ensure that you properly maintain your aligners include proper storage, cleaning, the right hygiene practices, and avoiding abrasive materials and ingredients that might damage your device.
In addition, always follow the dentist’s guidelines when using and cleaning your aligner. This saves you from damaging the device, forcing you to incur extra costs.