Achieving a beautiful, perfect smile is a dream for many adults and teenagers. If you share that dream, chances are you've done your research and are considering invisible aligners rather than traditional braces.
There are several advantages to invisible aligners, including a shortened treatment duration and the comfort that comes from not dealing with metal brackets and rubber brands. Here are a few of the do's and don'ts you should keep in mind if you choose invisible aligners to achieve an enviable smile.
Do Learn What to Expect During the First Few Days and Weeks
Your invisible aligners have several advantages over traditional braces. However, there are still several things you will need to get used to during the first few days and weeks of treatment. Here are a few of the aspects of living with invisible aligners you might not know:
- You will wear the aligners a lot. The more you wear your invisible aligners, the more effective they will be. Your dentist will recommend that you wear your aligners for at least 22 hours each day. You will only remove the aligners to brush your teeth, eat, and clean the aligners.
- You might feel some discomfort. You might feel some discomfort while you adjust to the invisible aligners, particularly on your gums. Luckily, as time passes, you mouth will adjust and the aligners will feel more comfortable.
- You might need attachments. Many dentists recommend attachments, which are small dots of dental bonding that are placed on certain teeth. If your aligners slip or move when you talk or chew, the attachments can help keep them in place.
- You might need to buy chewies. During the first few days and weeks of wearing your aligners, your dentist might recommend purchasing chewies. Chewies are small, cylindrical pieces of foam (specifically, styrene copolymer), and when you chew on them, they help eliminate any gaps between the aligners and your teeth.
Your first invisible aligner might be a little uncomfortable, and it could take some getting used to. However, it is worth the discomfort to achieve a beautiful smile.
Do Learn How to Clean and Care for Your Aligners
Your invisible aligners are barely noticeable, and you love the fact that your friends and family can't even tell you're straightening your teeth. However, if you don't clean and care for the aligners properly, they can become stained or warped, or you might even need to purchase a replacement.
The best way to clean your aligners is to soak them in a mixture of white vinegar and water, a denture soak, or a product recommended by your dentist. If you notice any stains, gently remove them with a soft bristled toothbrush. Never use toothpaste on your invisible aligners. Toothpaste is too abrasive, which could lead to noticeable wear and scratches.
Don't Eat or Drink Anything While Wearing Your Aligners
One of the most important aspects of properly caring for your aligners is to remember one rule: never eat anything or drink anything but water while you're wearing your them. In addition to causing stains and discoloration, you can actually damage or scratch your aligners while enjoying your favorite foods.
Instead, before you eat, remove your aligners, rinse them with water, and place them in their case. Never set your invisible aligners on the table. You could lose or damage them. Once you are done eating or drinking, brush and floss your teeth before replacing your aligners.
If you don't brush your thoroughly, any food particles between your teeth can become lodged between the aligners and your teeth, which can lead to a serious infection.
Following these simple do's and don'ts will help you know what to expect from your experience with invisible aligners and help you understand how to care for and clean them properly. If you have any additional questions about invisible aligners, don't hesitate to contact the professionals at Pembroke Pines Dental.