Cleaning Your Dental Retainer
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Cleaning Your Dental Retainer

Once your orthodontic treatment is complete and you’ve achieved a straight, beautiful smile, you’ll need to wear a dental retainer. Your retainer will prevent your teeth from shifting out of position, which could cause you to need braces again in the future! Because your dental retainer is going to be a part of your dental health routine forever, it’s very important that you learn how to care for it properly.

Like anything else you use on a daily basis, your dental retainer will wear out and get dirty with regular use. Bacteria live in your mouth, no matter how much you brush and floss. These bacteria will accumulate on your retainer while you wear it all night long, causing it to look, smell, and taste unpleasant. You may also notice white calcium deposits forming on your retainer as well. This is all normal, but it does require that you clean and sanitize your retainer.

  • It’s important to clean your retainer immediately after you remove it from your mouth, while it is still wet. Allowing the bacteria in your saliva to harden will make it much more difficult to use.
  • Brushing your retainer is a good idea, although with many retainer designs, your brush may not be able to reach all of its surfaces. Because of this, you may want to consider is soaking your retainer in a denture or retainer cleaning solution on a daily basis. The brand that you use isn’t important, but make sure that it is anti-bacterial.
  • As mentioned above, you can brush your retainer using a soft brush such as a toothbrush, or a denture brush. Never use toothpaste to brush your retainer, as most types of toothpaste include abrasives. Instead use only water or a mild dish soap.
  • If you notice calcium deposits forming on your retainer, you will need the help of your orthodontist to remove them. Tartar-removing solutions can be used to clean the calcium deposits off of your retainer.

Properly caring for your retainer will make it last longer, allowing you to save money on a replacement. To set up an orthodontic appointment or if you have any other questions about your dental retainer, please contact Lockett Orthodontics, located in Denver, CO.

Posted on Jan 21, 2016

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