Invisalign is often a discreet and convenient alternative to conventional metal braces, but any new experience can take some getting used to. The team at Bela Family Dentistry of Newberry has assembled these tips to help your Invisalign experience go more smoothly.
1. STICK TO WATER WHEN WEARING YOUR ALIGNER.
One of the main benefits of Invisalign is that you can remove your aligner when eating. Contrary to metal braces, you don’t have to deal with getting food stuck in your aligner. But what about when you want a quick sip of a refreshing drink? Unless the beverage is water, it’s best to take an extra few seconds to remove your aligner.
The reason is possible staining. Invisalign is transparent, so it’s very discreet. However, this transparency also means the aligners are prone to staining. Sipping soda, sports drinks, beer, wine, and other colored beverages while wearing Invisalign may cause noticeable stains on your aligner.
Drinking hot drinks, like coffee and tea, with your aligner in place is also a bad idea. The special plastic in Invisalign is resilient, but warping can still occur if it comes into contact with a hot beverage. Play it smart, and remove your Invisalign before drinking anything other than water.
2. GIVE INVISALIGN SOME TIME.
Most patients find Invisalign to be much more comfortable than metal braces. Since there are no metal brackets or wires, you won’t need to worry about those parts painfully scraping your cheeks or lips. Still, you may notice some passing soreness when you first receive your new aligner. This is normal and should resolve itself in a few days.
If you are experiencing particular discomfort, try some over-the-counter pain relievers. Of course, you can also always give Bela Family Dentistry of Newberry a call for advice.
3. PLEASE DON’T WRAP IT IN A NAPKIN!
Invisalign is removable, and that’s great for eating or playing sports. However, this feature can also result in lost aligners. All too frequently, patients will wrap their aligner in a napkin when removing it at mealtimes. Inevitably, the napkin ends up in the trash, along with the aligner.
Losing your aligner wastes time and money unnecessarily, so get in the habit of keeping your aligner in its dedicated container. You can store your aligner’s container in a purse, backpack, or handbag while you eat. If need be, consider handing it off to a trusted and responsible friend until you finish your meal. Treat your aligner as if it is as valuable as your wallet or mobile phone, and you’ll have no problems.
4. THE MORE YOU WEAR IT, THE SHORTER YOUR TREATMENT.
Another potential downside of Invisalign’s removability is that you may forget to wear your aligner. Making a habit of donning your aligner after meals and after brushing will help to avoid this problem. You can’t wear Invisalign 24 hours a day, nor should you. You should, however, set a goal of wearing your aligner for at least 22 hours each day. This means you need to wear your aligner while you sleep. Trust us, we did the math. Remember, the more you wear your aligner, the shorter your total treatment duration will be. By wearing Invisalign diligently, you could potentially shave months off your treatment time.
5. REALLY PAY ATTENTION TO YOUR ORAL HYGIENE.
You know that you should always brush twice a day and floss at least once daily, but wearing Invisalign makes these oral care habits even more crucial. Your aligner helps to create an ideal environment for harmful bacteria and keeps saliva from rinsing your teeth throughout the day. By being extra thorough and dedicated in your oral hygiene, you can prevent problems like tooth decay and gum disease.
Also, be sure to clean your aligner regularly, following your dentist’s instructions. Sticking a grimy aligner in your mouth is simply gross!