Invisalign has become a well-known system for recreating the smile to look and feel healthier and more attractive. The focal point of this method of treatment is the advantage of not being braces. No brackets and wires to get in the way of food, brushing, and confidence. Who doesn’t like the sound of that? While we are pleased with the interest our Mesa patients have about Invisalign, and we often use this system to straighten teeth, there are also things that patients may not expect.
Helpful Tips for Invisalign Patients
One of the keys to successful Invisalign treatment is being “in the know.” Here, we point out a few important, but easily overlooked details, that you want to tuck in your pocket for times you need support.
- Aligners are more comfortable than braces, but they aren’t completely The goal of treatment is to move teeth. That means force. As gentle as that is with Invisalign, there will still be a strange sensation of pressure for a few days. When new aligners are inserted, patients are strongly encouraged to leave them in at all times for the first 48 hours. Of course, they can be removed for brushing and meals, but that is all.
- Continual wear is necessary. After the first 48 hours, when pressure decreases (because teeth are moving a little), it is easy to believe that removal of aligners for a few minutes here, and it is acceptable. It’s not. Remember, aligners only work when they are worn. Removing them for photos, snacks, and beverages, or for any other reason, creates a risk for slow progress. Commitment can be one of the biggest challenges of Invisalign treatment.
- Brushing and flossing are your keys to prevention. Aligners cover teeth, which can lead to greater potency of bacteria and acidic ingredients. Brushing or rinsing after meals is crucial to dilute acidic and sugary residue from teeth. Without this habit, there is a very real risk of tooth decay throughout treatment.
- Trays need TLC, too! Yes, aligners are worn only for two-week intervals. However, bacterial accumulation on the clear plastic can lead to cloudiness, which then makes aligners more visible. Worse yet, bacteria on the surface of aligners can deposit byproduct that creates a foul odor as it wears down enamel. There is no need to brush aligners. This could cause scratches. Just a good rinse under cool water will do.