As the number of COVID-19 cases continue to rise, hand hygiene has never been more important than it is now. If you wear clear aligners, you probably realize there may be increased opportunity for the spread of germs from handling them.
Here are three important ways you can help to keep yourself and others free from illness and keep your progress right on track.
- Be sure to wash hands before and after handling your aligners. The CDC recommends washing hands with warm soap and water for a minimum of 20 seconds. Rinse well. Dry your hands completely, using a clean towel, or allow them to air dry.Use hand sanitizer if soap and water is unavailable. Though studies show that hand-washing is the number one way to prevent the spread of the virus, we know there are times you may need to use hand-sanitizer instead. Make sure it has at least 60% alcohol concentration. Place the recommended amount into the palm of your hand and rub over all surfaces of the hands until it feels completely dry. This should also take about 20 seconds.
- Brush your aligner, using a soft-bristle toothbrush and a dab of toothpaste. Rinse it well in cool water. This should be done when you wake in the morning and before you go to bed at night as a minimum. Doing so will help eliminate bacteria and viruses that may attach to them.
- Keep the storage case clean. It is best to wash them with warm soap and water 2-3 times each week to keep bacteria and odors from forming.
Remember, it is normal to have concerns during a time when it seems new information about the COVID-19 virus is coming at us daily. You may rest assured that our Belli & Streit Orthodontic team continues to follow stringent infection-control protocols and have added many more to ensure Center for Disease Control (CDC) compliance.