A lot of people complain about their retainers yellowing and becoming brittle too quickly. What most people don’t realize is that if you maintain a proper cleaning regimen and take care of your retainers, they can last many years. At SportingSmiles, our main goal is for you to get the maximum value out of our retainers. That’s why we’ve put together this list of simple care tips for your clear Essix retainers.
Proper Retainer Care
- Always remove your retainers with both hands, placing a finger on each side of the retainer. Removing it from one side of the mouth can cause twisting, which weakens the retainer and may cause cracking.
If you clean your retainer from the beginning it will prevent any buildup or discoloration. After retainers start to discolor it can be difficult to get them back to being clear. If your retainer gets too discolored or damaged, SportingSmiles can help you get a replacement retainer for a fraction of the cost.
- When cleaning your retainers, always cup the retainer securely in your hand or place them on a soft surface like a towel to ensure that you are applying even pressure to the retainer. Holding the retainers on one side can cause them to bend and twist, which will lead to cracking.
- Always clean your retainers with a soft bristle toothbrush and non-abrasive (non-tartar control, or grit-less) toothpaste after every use. If toothpaste isn’t available, rinse the retainers with water before storing them in their container. Avoid cleaning or rinsing your retainer with any alcohol-based mouth wash. The alcohol will dry out the retainer and cause cracking perishing.
- When cleaning your retainers, the best option is always to use a specialized retainer or mouthguard rinse. We recommend using Freshguard to clean your retainers. Freshguard is available at most drug stores, or online. If Freshguard isn’t available, denture cleaning tablets can also be used.
- To use Freshguard, follow the instructions on the box. Freshguard should be used at least twice a week to ensure that your retainer does not experience any yellowing and become brittle.
The Do’s and Don’ts of Cleaning Your Clear Essix Retainer
Don’t use abrasive or tartar-control toothpaste. This will scratch and damage the retainers.
Do use Freshguard to rinse your retainer.
Don’t use a standard mouth rinse to soak the retainer. The alcohol in the rinse will make the retainer brittle.
Do cup the retainer in your hand while brushing, or place it on a towel on the counter.
Don’t twist the retainer while brushing. The twisting motion will flex the retainer causing it to crack.