Retainer Cleaner: DIY

Maintaining your oral health is important to your overall health. If you have received a retainer to improve your smile, you likely already know how valuable it is to keep your retainer clean. If you don’t clean your retainer on a routine basis, your retainer can accumulate tartar, bacteria, and germs. Sometimes the best way to clean your retainer is with a safe and healthy DIY cleanser.
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Why DIY?

Even though there are retainer cleaners on the market, these cleaners may not be the best for your needs. It is possible that you are allergic to the ingredients in these cleaners or that you would prefer to use a cleaner that has simple ingredients. When you make your own cleaner, you know exactly what ingredients are being used to keep your retainer clean and bacteria-free.


Making your own retainer cleaner is as easy as mixing ingredients together in a bowl. All you need to make your own safe, effective, chemical-free cleaner is white vinegar, warm distilled water, and baking soda.

How To:

First off, take two tablespoons of white vinegar and 3/4 cup warm (not boiling) distilled water and mix these ingredients together in a bowl. Then, add one teaspoon of baking soda. Once your mixture is complete, you can place your retainer in the bowl with the mixture and let it soak for 10 to 15 minutes. When your retainer is done soaking, rinse it to remove any tartar that has accumulated. Use cool water when rinsing to extend the lifespan of your retainer.

What Not to Do:

If you’ve ever participated in science experiments, you may know that adding baking soda to straight vinegar causes a volcano-type reaction. This is why you should mix the vinegar and water before adding the baking soda. You should also never use boiling water to clean your retainer because the high temperature can melt the plastic of your retainer and deform it, causing it to no longer fit properly. Use this homemade mixture once a week for 10-15 minutes for a clean and bacteria-free retainer.

Dr. Marshall Skopp, DMD

Are you looking to receive a retainer or oral healthcare? If so, schedule an appointment with Dr. Marshall Skopp, DMD. You can schedule your appointment by phone at 718-982-5230. We are located at 2040 Forest Avenue in Staten Island, NY, and we look forward to helping you achieve your perfect smile.

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