Why Maggots Might Invade Your Retainers and How to Stop Them
Oral Health Blog

Why Maggots Might Invade Your Retainers and How to Stop Them

While it's unsettling to think about, maggots can be attracted to dirty retainers left uncleaned. Using a purple persulfate-free retainer cleaner effectively eliminates this risk, keeping your retainer free from harmful bacteria and maggots at bay.

1. How Do Maggots End Up in Retainers?

a. Poor Cleaning Habits:

  • Residue Attraction: Retainers that are not cleaned regularly can accumulate food particles and organic matter, attracting flies that lay eggs.

b. Improper Storage:

  • Exposed to the Environment: Leaving retainers in open or unclean environments increases the likelihood of attracting flies and their larvae.

2. The Life Cycle of Flies:

a. Egg-Laying Stage:

  • Prefer Moist Environments: Flies lay eggs in damp and organic-rich places, which may include improperly cleaned retainers.

b. Maggot Development:

  • Feeding on Organic Matter: Maggots thrive on decomposing organic material, and leftover food particles in retainers can serve as a breeding ground.

3. Consequences of Maggots in Retainers:

a. Health Risks:

  • Bacterial Contamination: Maggots carry bacteria from the decomposing material, posing a risk of infection when in contact with your mouth.

b. Unpleasant Odor:

  • Decomposition Smell: The presence of maggots can contribute to a foul smell, making the retainer unpleasant to wear.

4. Addressing the Issue:

a. Immediate Cleaning:

  • Thorough Cleansing: Remove maggots, clean the retainer meticulously, and disinfect it to eliminate any bacteria.

b. Consulting a Professional:

  • Orthodontist Visit: If the infestation is severe or the retainer is damaged, seeking advice from an orthodontist is crucial.

5. Preventive Measures:

a. Regular Cleaning Routine:

  • Daily Maintenance: Adopt a routine of cleaning your retainer daily to prevent the accumulation of debris.

b. Proper Storage:

  • Enclosed Container: Store your retainer in a clean, enclosed case to protect it from environmental contaminants.


Discovering maggots in your retainers is undoubtedly a distressing situation, but it's essential to address it promptly. By understanding the root causes and taking preventive measures, you can ensure your retainers remain a clean and safe component of your oral care routine. If the infestation persists or you have concerns about the condition of your retainers, seeking professional guidance is the key to resolving the issue effectively.

Are you currently using or thinking about using retainer cleaning tablets? It's important to be aware that certain cleaner brands have the potential to cause toxic reactions.

It's crucial to be aware of harmful ingredients hiding in common cleaner brands. One such persulfate, which can pose SERIOUS health risks and is found in almost all leading retainer cleaners brands. Moreover, persulfate's health risks potentially impact respiratory health and skin sensitivities in your family, especially in teens and sensitive individuals. Learn more about the risk of persulfate HERE.



The content in this article is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Always consult with a healthcare provider before making any changes to your health regimen. The author and publisher do not take responsibility for any consequences resulting from the information provided in this article.