How to Clean ClearCorrect Aligners

How to Clean ClearCorrect Aligners

Aligners are excellent alternatives to traditional wire braces. They discreetly straighten your smile, allow you to maintain your oral health more easily, and don't come with any food or drink restrictions. Because ClearCorrect aligners stay in your mouth for at least 22 hours a day, they're susceptible to the same plaque and bacteria as your teeth. That's why it's important to maintain a regular cleaning regimen to prevent cavities, gingivitis and bad breath.

Continue reading to learn more about what these aligners can do for you, as well as how to clean clear aligners for a more effective orthodontic treatment.

What Are ClearCorrect Aligners?

ClearCorrect aligners are similar to traditional braces, as they aim to straighten your teeth and give you a more confident smile. However, rather than using wires, ClearCorrect uses a series of custom-made aligners that apply gentle pressure to your teeth to move them into the proper position.

The aligners feature clear plastic, making them more discreet than traditional braces. All you have to do is pop them into your mouth over your teeth, and you can barely tell they're there. Many people prefer aligners because they look and feel better than wires.

To get them, your orthodontist will use a special scanner that displays your teeths' current position. Then, they'll send the images to ClearCorrect, who'll make your aligners before sending them back to your orthodontist. Each round of aligners will move your teeth slightly, slowly progressing until you've reached the end of your treatment.

Expect to wear your ClearCorrect aligners for at least 22 hours every day. This gives you time to eat, brush your teeth and drink certain beverages without harming the aligners. Be sure you wear them for the full 22 hours so your treatment can proceed without any interruptions. 

Benefits of ClearCorrect Aligners [list]

What Are Some of the Benefits of ClearCorrect Aligners?

Let's check out some of the benefits of wearing ClearCorrect aligners.

1. They Help Improve Oral Health

The overarching benefit of all aligners is improved oral health. Proper orthodontic treatment helps fix conditions like crowded or crooked teeth, gaps and improper bites. These conditions can make it hard to clean your teeth and put too much stress on your teeth and jaws. By receiving ClearCorrect aligner treatment, you'll have a much easier time keeping your teeth clean and may even experience less jaw pain or headaches.

2. You Get Faster Appointments

The average appointment time for aligners is typically shorter than those for traditional braces. That's because both appointments are very different in routine. At an appointment for traditional braces, your orthodontist will need more time so they can perform intensive tasks like removing wires, replacing rubber ties and more. Comparatively, at a ClearCorrect aligner appointment, your orthodontist will likely only have to check your progress and supply you with new trays.

The total treatment time is usually shorter, too. While traditional braces have a treatment plan of up to 3 years, you and your orthodontist will assess your progress with your ClearCorrect aligners on a weekly basis, so you might finish your treatment in under a year. Although, it's helpful to note that treatment times vary depending on your goals and compliance with your orthodontist's instructions.

3. They're More Discreet Than Traditional Braces

Perhaps the most significant benefit to ClearCorrect aligners is they're more discreet than traditional braces. Although effective, traditional braces have wires that other people notice, which may make some people feel self-conscious. Aligners are made of clear plastic, meaning they're hard to spot, and people won't only be able to see them unless you point them out.

4. You Can Eat and Brush Your Teeth Like Normal

Traditional braces come with dietary limitations. Orthodontists instruct these patients to avoid foods like popcorn, nuts, ice, hard candy and chewing gum because they risk interfering with the brackets or wires. All you have to do with aligners is pop them out before eating and drinking colored or acidic drinks.

It's also tricky to brush and floss around the wires and brackets of traditional braces. Aligners don't have these barriers. Like with eating, you just have to pop them out before brushing and flossing, meaning you don't have to make any changes to your current oral health routine.

5. They're Easy to Clean

There are over 700 species of bacteria in your mouth. That high number means you can experience dental plaque if you don't practice proper oral hygiene. This film of bacteria causes cavities, gingivitis and tooth loss. Your aligners spend at least 22 hours in your mouth, so they're susceptible to the same fungi and microbes as your teeth. Just as you brush and floss your teeth morning and night, it's essential to clean your aligners daily, too.

Luckily, cleaning is extremely easy! Most cleaning methods require you to soak your aligners in a bacteria-fighting formula, like hydrogen peroxide or baking soda mixture.

Continue reading to learn more about how to clean clear aligners. 

Why Is It Important to Keep Your ClearCorrect Aligners Clean?

Keep your ClearCorrect aligners clean to maintain their clear appearance and avoid worsening oral health conditions. As mentioned, your aligners are susceptible to the same bacteria-filled environment as your mouth. When you don't clean them, you're more prone to developing issues like cavities and gingivitis. Plus, plaque can build and harden to form tartar. Tartar has a whitish or yellowish appearance, which other people will be able to see in your aligner's nooks and crannies.

ClearCorrect Aligners Cleaning Methods

Can you clean ClearCorrect aligners? Yes, and you should to keep your oral hygiene in top shape. Take a look at some tips and methods to consider when cleaning your ClearCorrect aligners.

EverSmile WhiteFoam is America's top-selling aligner cleaner.

1. EverSmile® White Foam™

Both a reliable on-the-go and deep-cleaning solution, WhiteFoam is America's top-selling aligner cleaner. It's extremely easy to use. All you have to do is pump some of the hydrogen-peroxide-based cleaning solution into your tray and place it in your mouth, spitting out any excess product. If you want a deeper clean, just cover your tray in the cleaning solution and let it sit for around 5 minutes. Though you can scrub away any particles with a soft-bristled toothbrush, brushing and rinsing is optional.

2. White Vinegar and Water

Because white vinegar has an acidity level of around 5%, it's gentle enough to use for cleaning your aligner. Plus, white vinegar doesn't have any added colorants that can discolor the clear plastic material of your trays. Mix 1 part white vinegar with 3 parts warm water. Then, drop your trays into the mixture. After 20 to 30 minutes, take the trays out and rinse them off with water to remove any excess vinegar.

3. Baking Soda and Water

Baking soda has a mild abrasive quality that carefully removes plaque and other particles from your aligners. Dilute a tablespoon of baking soda with 1/2 cup of warm water, then dunk your trays in and let them soak for about an hour. Once they're done soaking, take them out and rinse them off with water.

4. Hydrogen Peroxide and Water

Hydrogen peroxide is essentially water, but it has an extra oxygen molecule. This additional component gives hydrogen peroxide its cleaning power, creating an oxidation effect that kills germs and lifts color. Fill a container with equal parts hydrogen peroxide and warm water. Put your aligners in the container and let it sit for around 30 minutes before taking it out and rinsing it off with water.

5. Antibacterial Soap and Water

Another way you can clean your trays is with antibacterial soap and water. Mix a small amount of antibacterial soap in a glass of warm water until soap bubbles form. Let your aligners sit in the mixture for around 30 minutes, then take them out and rinse with water.

Additional Tips for Keeping Your ClearCorrect Aligners Clean

Aside from your cleaning routine, you can explore other ClearCorrect aligners cleaning tips.

1. Set Them Aside When Eating or Drinking

Chewing puts a lot of force on your aligners. The clear plastic material isn't designed to withstand this pressure. When you eat with your aligners in, you risk cracking or denting them. Plus, when your aligner cracks or dents, it takes away from the structural integrity needed to properly align your teeth.

You'll also want to avoid drinking colored or acidic beverages. Colored beverages risk discoloring the clear plastic, causing them to be more noticeable to other people. Acidic beverages dry out your aligners, making them more prone to damage.

Simply remove your aligners and store them in their container when you're eating or drinking to avoid these risks.

Remove your ClearCorrect aligners before brushing your teeth.

2. Remove Them Before Brushing Your Teeth

Brush your teeth and wash your aligners separately. You need to remove your aligners to brush your teeth properly or else your teeth will continue building up plaque, which may lead to cavities or gingivitis.

Also, your aligners aren't built to withstand toothpaste's abrasiveness. Toothpaste is great at removing plaque from your enamel — the outer layer of your teeth — but is too harsh for the clear plastic material. However, you can find non-abrasive toothpaste that's suitable enough for gently cleaning your aligners. If you choose to take this route, make sure you use a soft-bristled toothbrush to avoid scratching and weakening the material.

3. Store Them Properly

Although you'll wear your aligners for 22 hours, you'll have to take them out when brushing your teeth, drinking certain beverages and eating. During your treatment, your orthodontist will supply you with a container to store your aligners when you're not using them. Always store them in their container to avoid misplacing them and having to replace them, which can delay treatment. 

A common scenario many orthodontists see is people losing their aligners by accidentally throwing them away. When people eat, they're inclined to put their aligners on the nearest tissue. But, by doing this, you may accidentally throw your aligners away with the rest of your trash. Avoid this scenario by keeping your aligner in its container.

4. Keep Your Teeth Clean

Your teeth share the same environment as your aligners. Both should stay as clean as possible. Good oral hygiene includes flossing at least once a day, brushing your teeth twice daily using fluoride toothpaste and seeing your dentist once every six months. By regularly cleaning plaque from your enamel, less plaque will transfer to your aligners, making them easy to clean.

What Not to Use When Cleaning Your ClearCorrect Aligners

It's best to use hydrogen peroxide, baking soda, antibacterial soap, white vinegar or non-abrasive toothpaste when cleaning your ClearCorrect aligners. Some products and methods you shouldn't use include:

  • Abrasive toothpaste: As mentioned, you shouldn't use abrasive toothpaste to clean your aligners. The abrasive qualities are too harsh for the clear plastic, making them more prone to damage like cracks and dents. Small scratches can also make your aligners appear cloudy.
  • Mouthwash: Mouthwash has a high alcohol content to kill the bacteria that exist in your mouth. Although smart to include in your oral hygiene routine, avoid using it to clean your aligners. Alcohol can dry them out and increase their risk of damage.
  • Cleaning agents: Cleaning agents use harsh chemicals to remove stubborn bacteria from your house, like in the kitchen or bathroom. They're not suited for cleaning plaque. The cleaning agents mentioned earlier are much gentler and better suited for cleaning your aligners.
  • Hot water: Using very hot water to clean your ClearCorrect aligners can cause them to warp. When your aligners warp, they change in structure, causing them to move your teeth into the wrong positions. Contact your orthodontist right away if you discover your aligners have warped.
  • The dishwasher: Another common scenario many orthodontists hear is their patients putting their aligners in the dishwasher. Dishwashers are too harsh for your aligners, and they use boiling hot water that can warp and damage them. Instead of using a dishwasher to soak your aligners, place them in a small glass with the cleaning agents outlined above.

 

Shop WhiteFoam to make your cleaning routine a little easier!

Shop America's No. 1 Selling Aligner Cleaner Today

Dr. Michael Florman, the founder of EverSmile, always got the same question from his patients — "How do I keep my aligners clean and fresh?" To solve their problems, he patented a special formula of enahnced hydrogen peroxide that magically cleans aligners.

WhiteFoam is an on-the-go and deep cleaning solution that's great for cleaning ClearCorreect aligners. Its hydrogen peroxide formula dives deep to remove 99.999% of bacteria, including the plaque that causes cavities, gingivitis and bad breath. Plus, because hydrogen peroxide is great at lifting and removing stains, EverSmile WhiteFoam doubles as a whitening agent.

EverSmile WhiteFoam comes in a convenient pump container. All you have to do is pump some of the product into your tray, pop it into your mouth and spit out any excess. Then, you're free to go about your day as usual. It's as easy as that!

Shop WhiteFoam by visiting our product page. You can easily place your order or reach out to us if you have any questions — we're here to help. EverSmile looks forward to making your cleaning routine a little easier!

Review by Michael Florman, Oral Care Expert

Reviewed By Michael Florman, Updated on 12/8/21

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