Cold and flu season is coming, and to say the past year has prepared us for it would be an understatement. Between wearing masks, washing hands, and socially distancing, the last thing most people are worried about is catching a cold these days. However, for people living with Invisalign, staying healthy requires a little extra care. Fortunately, a local orthodontist is here to offer the quick and easy tips you need to stay safe heading into the holidays and 2021.
Always Wash Your Hands Before Touching Your Trays
Many people fall into the habit of taking out their trays before they eat and then only washing their hands once the meal is over, but it goes without saying, this is not wise given our current times. Before you take your trays out to eat or clean your teeth, be sure to thoroughly wash your hands. This will guard you against accidentally transferring germs to your mouth.
Beware Sugary Cough Drops/Syrups
As the weather cools, many people end up developing a scratchy throat, which can easily be remedied with a lozenge or sip of some soothing cough syrup. Unfortunately, many varieties are packed with sugar. These should be avoided even if someone doesn’t have Invisalign, but for those who do, the sugar can become trapped between the trays and teeth, which can speed up the growth of harmful, cavity-causing bacteria. Be sure to look for “Sugar-Free” if you need help with a sore throat!
Be Careful Where You Set Your Trays
Whether you’re working at home or in an office, you should never set your trays down on a desk, filing cabinet, stack of papers, etc. This is not only a good way to lose the trays, but these personal spaces also tend to harbor a lot of germs, including the cold and flu virus. That’s why it’s wise to always keep your Invisalign carrying case with you and only put your trays in it (be sure to regularly clean it as well).
Keep Your Aligners Clean
In addition to washing your hands and being careful where you set your aligners, it’s also important that you clean them daily. When you start your Invisalign treatment, your orthodontist will show you the best ways to rinse and brush them as well as tell you about which products to use (regular toothpaste can actually damage the plastic). Consistent Invisalign hygiene will not only keep your trays clear and free of unpleasant odors, but it will also lower your risk of contracting the cold or flu, which we can all appreciate!
This cold and flu season (like the rest of 2020) promises to be unlike any other. If you have Invisalign, taking a little extra time to put these tips into action will not only help you stay healthy, but your friends and family members as well, all while you’re getting a beautifully straight smile!
About the Author
Dr. Jeffrey Shirck is an award-winning, board-certified orthodontist based in Powell who has already helped countless children and adults achieve the straight smiles of their dreams. At his practice, Shirck Orthodontics, his goal is to not only give his patients excellent results, but a comfortable experience as well. That’s why he’s always happy to share day-to-day tips people can use to make their orthodontic journey easier. For more information on how to stay healthy this season if you have Invisalign, give us a call today.