If you consistently wear a nightguard, retainer, or Invisalign aligners at night while you sleep, it's very important to keep them clean. Plaque and bacteria build up on your retainer just like they do on your teeth, so you are putting your teeth at risk when you put a dirty retainer into your mouth. Here are some helpful tips for keeping your retainer clean.
Plenty of Rinsing with Water
If you are wearing Invisalign aligners throughout the day, drinking water is your best bet. It will keep your mouth clean and hydrated and wash away any food particles or bacteria from your mouth. You should remove your aligners when drinking sugary drinks like soda, or drinks that can stain like coffee or red wine.
Retainers worn at night can also benefit from a rinse with water before you put them in and after you take them out for brushing.
Brush With Toothpaste
Brushing your retainer at the same time you brush your teeth is a good habit to have. Brush your retainer in the morning with a soft bristled brush and non-whitening toothpaste, which can be abrasive. This will ensure your retainer is clean and ready for night time wear.
Baking Soda or Vinegar
For a deeper cleaning, baking soda or vinegar can be used. Baking soda helps to control bacteria without the use of harsh chemicals. Create a paste of half water and half baking soda and scrub the mix gently onto your retainer, and then rinse the paste away thoroughly.
White vinegar can help to disinfect your retainer and remove residue. Again use a mixture that is half vinegar and half water to soak your retainer for about 20 minutes. Soak your retainer in water for another 20 minutes to rinse and eliminate the odor of the vinegar.
Do you have more questions about your retainer, night guard, or Invisalign in Irvine, CA? Contact Dr. Jeffrey C. Robertson today for answers.