How Does One Clean Invisalign?

What is involved in cleaning Invisalign aligners?  How long does the invisalign cleaning process take?

Doctor Answers 24

Cleaning Invisalign Trays

This is one of those KISS principles: Keep It Simple.

Regular toothpaste with your toothbrush is fine, and recomended. Other products can discolor the aligners, making the teeth look somewhat yellow. They are replaced every two weeks, so it is a minor issue, but if it becomes too complicated it won't be followed through.

But most importantly is to brush and floss after each meal. The aligners start to act in the way a bleaching tray does, so if food and low pH saliva are trapped, the teeth will "soak" in it.

One of the advantages of Invisalign over braces is better hygiene. Without caring for the teeth before placing the aligners, it becomes a moot point.

How to clean your Clear Aligner...

Hello there,
The easiest and best way to clean your clear aligner is to take them off and brush them (on the inside and the outside) each time you brush your teeth.  When finished, rinse them with water and place back into your mouth.  Yes, it is really this simple.
Good luck with everything.

Tooth brush and water, retainer cleaner or Invisalign crystals, or ultrasonic

We recommend our patients clean their aligners with water and a clean toothbrush without toothpaste. Toothpastes have abrasives in them and will scratch the surfaces of the aligners. This will make the aligner look less clear and also creates small traps for bacteria.

Invisalign does not recommend this, but retainer tablets work well once or twice a week. Our patients have not had any problems with cleaning in this manner. The Invisalign crystals can be used, but are quite costly and not available outside the United States.

Finally, there are personal-sized ultrasonic cleaner available. These devices cause very fine vibrations and waves to loosen and material stuck to your aligners.

Jason K. Tam, DDS
Toronto Orthodontist

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Keeping Invisalign Trays Clean and Bright

Use a soft toothbrush with your regular toothpaste - brush gently cleaning out the center of the trays.  We suggest following this with a little diluted bleach rinse.  The small bit of bleach keeps the trays clear and clean looking.  This system has worked very well for our patients, allowing for clean trays and bright teeth.  Other products sometimes discolor the trays which could translate into yellower looking teeth when wearing the aligners.

Cleaning Invisalign aligners

Invisalign aligners can easily be cleaned with a mild denture cleaner with a normal tooth brush. After brushing and flossing your teeth you can pour a little mouthwash over the aligners and this will help in keeping your mouth feeling fresh.

Cate Vieregger, DDS
Denver Dentist
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

Cleaning your Invisalign aligners!

This is one of the most frequently asked questions by my patients who I have treated with Invisalign!

The aligners are best cleaned with a dab of toothpaste using a toothbrush. I recommend using regular toothpaste and not whitening toothpaste... some whitening toothpastes are abrasive and may dull the aligner... Additionally it is not recommended to use denture cleaners or soak them in mouthwash; again this may dull he aligners and can make the aligners more visible.

Please Please Please!!! Brush and floss your teeth before replacing the aligner in the mouth... I have seen patients present with tooth decay from not taking the time to do this...

Invisalign has cleaning crystals that the aligners can be soaked in if you do prefer to soak them.

Hope this helps... any other questions please do not hesitate to ask...

Ryan Sellinger, DMD
Manhattan Dentist

Simple Steps to Cleaning Aligners

This is more simple than most people think.  It is very important though as you do not want to work hard at cleaning your teeth only to have dirty aligners repopulate bacteria onto your teeth.  Most toothpastes are abrasive to the plastic surface of the aligner and can produce micro-scratches that can allow bacteria containing plaque to adhere more easily.  Since most people have a bottle of pump hand soap near the sink where they brush their teeth, I recommend having a second toothbrush which is only used on the aligners. Simply brush the inside and outside thoroughly 3 times daily with a small amount of liquid soap then rinse them under water to remove any soap and they are sparkling clean.  There are some cleansing tablets that are made specifically for aligner plastic, but they really are not necessary if you follow the steps above.  Please do not ever use Denture cleaner tablets as these may damage the aligner material.

Douglas Jopling, DDS
Dallas, TX area

Cleaning your Invisalign Aligners

You should rinse them when removing and brush them with a separate toothbrush using warm water and soap to keep them clean.  There is also a cleaner that you can purchase on Invisalign store website. 

Best of luck!

Aligner cleaning

The key is staying on top of cleaning the aligners daily.  It's best to rinse the aligners with water and scrub with your toothbrush without the toothpaste.  This should be done every time you brush your teeth.  Also, use a denture tablet (15 mins) (Efferdent).  Taking the aligners out to drink (except for water) and brushing your teeth before putting aligners back in after meals also helps a ton.  Keep in mind you will be moving on to a fresh aligner in 2 weeks.

Joel Klasfeld, DDS
New York Dentist
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

How Do I Clean my Invisalign?

Rinse your aligners when you remove them: dry saliva and plaque create a perfect breeding ground for foul smelling bacteria. Soak your aligners: denture cleaner, retainer brite, and the official Invisalign cleaning crystals are all excellent options in keeping your trays clear and sanitized.

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.