It’s absolutely important for orthodontic patients to take proper care of their retainers, so here are some tips to perfect your post-care routine!
When you consider just how quickly bacteria, plaque and tartar accumulate within our mouths on a daily basis, it makes perfect sense why retainer cleaning is so important for your overall post-care routine. When someone doesn’t clean their retainer on a daily basis, they can inadvertently develop dental issues that are best to be avoided.
Below we’ll be going over some important retainer cleaning tips that orthodontic patients and parents should keep in mind for after treatment with JK Orthodontics ends!
Different Types of Retainers That We Offer at JK Orthodontics
We generally offer two types of retainers, including the following:
- Hawley Retainers: These are removable retainers that are comprised of metal wiring within an acrylic plate. This is by far the most common type of retainer that most people are accustomed to, and it’s 100% customized to a patient’s mouth and does a great job at retaining treatment results for many years to come!
- Clear Plastic Aligners: Our Line-M-Up™ patients will utilize their last set of invisible aligner trays as their retainers, which is why Line-M-Up™ patients must be particularly careful during the final stages of their treatment process! Although these retainers are very durable, they must be properly cleaned and taken care of in order to avoid discolorations and potential bad odors.
How to Take Care of Your Hawley & Plastic Aligner Retainers
Here are some fundamental tips to keep in mind when it comes to properly taking care of your retainers:
- Remove your retainer out of your mouth when you’re ready to do so, and initiate the cleaning process right away before any debris and other germs can harden.
- Use a soft-bristle toothbrush and warm water to thoroughly clean debris off your retainer at nighttime prior to putting it in your mouth, and remember that you do not need toothpaste for this type of cleaning process.
- Use a mixture of warm water and hydrogen peroxide instead of toothpaste, and gently scrub your retainers until they’re deeply cleaned. It’s important to not scrub too hard on your retainers, because this could potentially scratch them.
- Talk to Dr. Karpac and our staff about retainer cleaning solutions that you can soak your retainers within. If we recommend this type of cleaning process for your retainers, be sure to follow the product’s specific instructions.
Extra Retainer Cleaning Tips
Although the above tips are a great reference for your post-care routine, there are plenty of other tips that orthodontic patients will need to keep in mind regarding their retainer upkeep. Some of those extra tips include:
- Replacing your retainers when necessary. Your retainers are inevitably going to be subjected to all sorts of wear and tear, so it’s possible that you’re going to need new ones if something goes wrong. Be sure to consult with Dr. Karpac when you’re concerned about the condition of your retainers.
- Keep your retainer cases clean. Just like your actual retainers, your retainer case is going to experience bacteria buildup as well. This means that you’ll need to softly scrub your case with warm water and dish soap on a regular basis to avoid bacteria development.
- Avoid retainer warping. When you soak your retainers for too long, you can run the risk of warping them. This is why it’s incredibly important that you only soak your retainers for recommended time periods. You also can’t leave your retainers exposed to high amounts of heat, including microwaves, hot cars, washing/drying machines, boiling water, etc.
JK Orthodontics Is Here To Help Patients Long After Their Treatment Ends With Post-Care Assistance And Checkups!
JK Orthodontics is an industry leader throughout Central Ohio because we go above and beyond to exceed the expectations of all our patients, and one way we do this is by assisting our patients with their post-care routines and retainer cleaning.
You can reach us online or call us at 614-766-0330 (Dublin office) or 614-471-6355 (Gahanna office) to let us know what questions you have about your retainer and post-care upkeep!