So you’ve gotten your new clear aligners, and you’re on your way to unlocking the power of your new and improved smile. But while your mouth is moving toward a great look, you also want to be careful to avoid bad breath. That means learning how to clean Smile Happy aligners — and we’ve got five easy ways for you to do it.
Not knowing how to clean aligners can cause as many issues as you’re wearing them to fix. As always, maintain good oral hygiene by brushing and flossing regularly when you take out your aligners, and remove them any time you eat or drink anything other than cool water. But another integral part of your fresh-breath routine should be cleaning your aligners each time they’re removed.
Here are five great options for how to clean aligners:
1. Ultrasonic and UV Cleaning Machine
An ultrasonic and UV Cleaning Machine is the easiest way to clean your aligners. Simply add warm water to the reservoir, drop in your aligners, and turn it on. Two 5-minute cycles will kill 99% of odor-causing bacteria.
2. Cleaning Tablets
You can use any cleaning tablets and follow the directions on the packing, or you can use Universal Cleaning Tablets. Simply drop one tablet of cleaner into a cup of warm water and let it dissolve for 2-3 minutes. Drop in your aligners for 3 minutes to fully clean. Rinse aligners thoroughly with water and then pop them back in your mouth, fully cleaned.
3. Soap and water
Squeeze a bit of gentle liquid soap into a cup of warm (but not hot!) water and mix to form suds. Soak your aligners in the soapy water for 20–30 minutes, then rinse your aligners clean.
4. Vinegar and water
In a cup, mix one part white vinegar to three parts warm water. Make sure the water isn’t too hot, though! Hot water can damage the plastic in your aligners and ruin them. Soak your aligners in the liquid for 20 minutes, then rinse in cool water.
5. Baking soda and water
Mix a tablespoon of baking soda with ½ cup water and soak your aligners for 60 minutes. Then, scoop out your aligners and rinse them before reuniting them with your teeth.
How *not* to clean aligners:
Mouthwash may be great for your mouth. But it’s no good for your aligners. The coloring used in most mouthwashes can permanently stain your clear aligners.
It may seem natural to use toothpaste to clean your aligners as you do your teeth, but toothpaste’s abrasive properties make it a big no-no.
Dishwashers use hot water, which can damage or discolor your aligners.
4. Basically, anything not listed above
Bleach, alcohol and other harsh chemicals can permanently warp your aligners. As long as you’re using one of the gentler methods above, you’ve got nothing to worry about — and your smile will be more sparkling than ever.
Remember to brush and floss your teeth before putting in your aligners, and rinse the aligners right before wearing them.
With these tips for how to clean aligners, your breath will stay fresh and clean while your smile becomes it best.