Posted on June 8, 2022
Once your Invisalign treatment is finished, you’ll have a beautiful, gleaming smile to show the world. To keep it that way, you’ll need to wear a retainer for a while. Your removable Invisalign retainer will be comfortable and convenient, but you will need to care for it properly.
During Invisalign treatment, you change aligner trays every couple of weeks to move your teeth gradually into place. But your retainer is designed to last, and you should wear it for several months or even years. So, it’s important to keep it safe and in good condition. If you lose it, your teeth could shift out of position.
Since you’ll be wearing a retainer for a limited number of hours per day (after a few months, just at night), you’ll be removing it more often than you did your aligners. Use a case to store your retainer, and keep track of the case by designating a special place for it.
Invisalign retainers are made from a durable type of plastic; but, even so, excessive heat can harm them. If the plastic warps slightly in any way, your retainer won’t be as effective as it should be. If you notice that a retainer is too tight or loose, or just doesn’t fit right, you should see your orthodontist immediately.
To prevent problems from heat, avoid leaving your retainer in a hot car, next to a heater, out in the sun, or anywhere else where the temperature could exceed 115 degrees Fahrenheit. And the last thing you want to do is accidentally send them through the washing machine or the dishwasher.
Cleaning your Invisalign retainer properly takes more than a quick rinse under the bathroom faucet. If not cleaned well, bacteria can build up inside the retainer, causing bad odors and contributing to tooth decay. It can also become discolored. At least once a day, give your retainer a thorough cleaning by brushing it with a soft toothbrush. When you’re not wearing the retainer, soak them in a denture cleaner or a special cleaner made for Invisalign.
With proper care, your Invisalign retainer can last for several years. However, you will still need to follow the after-care instructions given to you by your orthodontist. And don’t forget that regular checkups are important in keeping your smile strong and healthy.
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