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Effective Retainer Cleaning Tips for 2022

It may come as a shock that many individuals go for long stretches of time without effectively cleaning their retainer. While it’s easy to remember to brush our teeth twice a day, retainers tend to be forgotten about.

It may come as a shock that many individuals go for long stretches of time without effectively cleaning their retainer. While it’s easy to remember to brush our teeth twice a day, retainers tend to be forgotten about. However, we have put a list together of the best 10 years to clean your retainer for the 2022 year.


  • Take out the retainer when preparing to eat food or drink beverages that are known to stain teeth. This step can aid in keeping a retainer clean. This will also allow the individual to remember to clean their retainer before putting it back in place.
  • You can effectively clean your mouth gear using basic tools you likely already have around your home. Each morning, use a soft-bristle toothbrush to give your guard or retainer a gentle scrubbing like you would your own teeth. The only thing you need is lukewarm water.
  • Brush your teeth before putting the retainer back in. This can help to maintain the bacteria growth that happens after eating.
  • Patients can ask about retainer cleaner to safely soak their retainer. Some retainers need water to keep their structure.
  • Know what the signs are when a retainer needs cleaning, such as: Is there film on the retainer, does your retainer look cloudy, or are there white spots on the retainer? If the answer is yes, then this retainer needs a deep clean.

Knowing when a retainer needs a thorough cleaning will help to ward off any bad breath or infections. This is a huge preventative step!

  • When a patient is not wearing their retainer, the retainer should always be kept in the case. A retainer case is vital to keeping any retainer safe and intact. It prevents the retainer from being crushed or thrown away accidentally. It also keeps it clean from outside-of-the-mouth dirt and debris. Always gently clean the retainer before placing it back into the case.

  • Make sure to deep clean a retainer at least once per week. A deeper weekly clean is a great way to keep your retainer looking very new, and it will help kill harmful bacteria that cause bad breath and illness. Plus, it breaks up plaque and tartar that may have missed during the week with daily cleanings.
  • Avoid using toothpaste or any abrasive cleaning product that can damage your clear retainer. Instead, try soaking the clear plastic retainer in lukewarm water and ask the orthodontist what type of mild and gentle cleaner to use.
  • A Hawley retainer will often accumulate plaque and food debris on the acrylic palate portion of the retainer. It is important to keep it clean to avoid damage over time and prevent bad breath. Now with the Hawley retainer it can be soaked in denture cleaner overnight to maintain a deep clean to the product.
  • Mixing baking soda with water can create a great cleaner that won’t harm or crack your retainer. Be sure to check out Steraligner which is a product that deep cleans the the aligner tray.

There are natural remedies for cleaning retainers that include mixtures of baking soda with water. To create a paste to softly brush throughout the retainer. Or using white vinegar that can be used as a disinfectant to clean out the bacteria that may be residing in your retainer.

However, before going to grab the white vinegar, simply ask your orthodontist what the best method to follow should be to keep your retainer smelling and looking clean.


  • Retainer Brite Cleaning Tablets
  • M3 Naturals Retainer Cleaner in Mint
  • Fresh Guard Soak
  • Retainer UV Cleaning Cases


If anyone is needing to visit our orthodontic care center, visit Amazing Smiles Orthodontist with convenient locations in Long Island Brooklyn, and Queens, NY. Amazing Smiles honors payment plans such as payment installments, insurance, flexible spending programs, and third-party financing.


Anyone can reach out and schedule a free consultation by contacting the phone numbers below:

Forest Hills

Ph: 718-275-3200

100-25 Queens Blvd.

Forest Hills, NY, 11375


Phone: 516-295-2006

545 Central Avenue

Cedarhurst, NY, 11516


Phone: 718-763-2080

2078 East 65th Street

Brooklyn, NY, 11234

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