Our office writes frequently about the benefits of maintaining excellent oral hygiene through good habits, such as cleaning your teeth regularly and eating the proper food and drinks. However, for many patients, it’s important to not only clean the mouth but to consider other appliances that must be maintained over time.
Why Clean a Retainer?
Retainers are exposed to the same environment that the rest of your mouth is, including the food, drink, and acids that you consume. That means that bacteria can grow on your retainer just like they can around your teeth. If you don’t clean your retainer regularly then it can serve as a breeding ground for unwanted bacteria, which can lead to plaque and other dental problems.
How to Clean Your Retainer
If you have a retainer, you should extensively clean it once a week using an approved product from your dentist. Otherwise, if your dentist gives you permission, you can gently brush it with a toothbrush every time you brush your teeth (note that not all retainers should be brushed and it’s always important to visit with your dentist about your particular situation). If the retainer smells, has a cloudy appearance or has white spots, it’s a good sign it’s time to give the retainer a deeper clean. While approved cleaning products are a good option, homemade recipes that include vinegar, baking soda, or castile soap are available, as well.
If you have any questions about your dental health or if you would like to schedule a free consultation, please contact our team or make an appointment. Our incredible staff will give you the best dental care possible.