I am not sure that my Invisalign trays are getting clean enough. The thought of having to wear them for 2 weeks is kind of grossing me out. I use the cleaning solution my dentist gave me and when I asked her if there is something more I can do, I felt brushed off. She implied that I am overthinking it and need to relax. I don’t want my trays to start stinking and giving me bad breath. I keep a small bottle of mouthwash in my purse because I am very self-conscious about my breath. I found a container with holes in it that will hold the trays and I am wondering if I can safely put the trays in the dishwasher 2 or 3 times a week to give them a good, sterile cleaning. Will the dishwasher change the color of my Invisalign? Thanks. Talia
The hot water temperature in a dishwasher can easily distort the shape of your Invisalign aligners. And of course, the heated drying cycle would melt them. Even if you reduced the water temperature and didn’t use the heated drying option, the water pressure from the dishwasher could damage the trays—even if they are in a container.
If you are using the Invisalign cleaning kit, it will sanitize your aligners. A soaking solution of white vinegar and water will disinfect your aligners, too. You can soak your aligners for about 30 minutes each week. If you want to soak them more often, dilute the solution you use to clean them so it won’t be harsh. Use the Invisalign kit or the vinegar and water solution to avoid discoloring or distorting the shape of your aligners.
If you are maintaining good oral hygiene by brushing and flossing your teeth after eating, it will also help keep your Invisalign trays clean. Invisalign doesn’t cause bad breath, but if you don’t maintain good oral hygiene, the odor from unclean teeth can transfer to the trays. If you are in a location where you can’t brush or floss your teeth after eating, be certain to rinse your mouth thoroughly. Some patients use breath mints after eating, but the sugar content of the mints creates bacteria on your teeth. The bacteria can cause decay and odor.
The next time you visit your dentist for a checkup, speak with her about your concerns. Let your dentist know how you are cleaning your Invisalign. Your dentist can give you additional tips to ensure you are maintaining good oral hygiene and keeping your aligners clean.
This post is sponsored by San Jose dentists Dr. Ralph Stanley, Dr. Magdalena Azzarelli, and Dr. Rogé Jacob.