Invisalign is almost notoriously straightforward — wear your aligners 22 hours per day to get straighter teeth in a year! It’s to the point that some people think a patient can’t screw up the process. Unless you don’t wear your trays enough, the thinking goes, Invisalign is guaranteed to improve your smile.
Unfortunately, it’s still possible that you might derail your straighter smile. To keep that from happening to you, here are three ways to ruin an Invisalign treatment from your Sachse dentist and what to do instead.
You Eat or Drink with the Trays In
During meals, leaving the trays in your mouth damages them from biting, gets them dirty with food particles, and allows substances to erode them. Hot beverages, in particular, will distort the plastic in your aligners.
Leaving the trays inside could also prove risky for your health. If you consume sugary drinks, sugary liquid might wedge between the aligners and your teeth, increasing the chances of tooth decay. Plus, if the fluid is colored, it could stain your teeth over time.
For these reasons, remove your aligners when you eat or drink something other than water. Furthermore, brush and floss before re-inserting them. That way, food particles won’t get stuck in your mouth.
You Use Harmful Ingredients to Clean Them
As said before, heat can distort the shape of your aligners. Therefore, don’t use hot water to clean them. Bleach, on the other hand, would be an even worse cleaner. It would ruin the trays by degrading their plastic materials.
Instead, wash your hands with soap and water and brush one aligner at a time. Clean the inside and outside of each using a soft-bristle toothbrush and toothpaste. Remember, unclean aligners can put you at risk for bad breath and tooth decay, so prioritize cleaning them regularly!
You Leave Your Trays Out in the Open
Leaving trays in the open after removing them is a health hazard. Doing so exposes them to bacterial buildup, which could cause the wearer to develop gum disease, tooth decay, and more. After all, said bacteria would turn leftover sugar in the mouth into acid, decaying the surface of teeth and causing plaque growth.
So, when removing your trays, please keep them in a secure location to reduce contamination. Wearing them consistently for the required 20-22 hours would also help.
Invisalign treatment may be simple, but that doesn’t mean you can treat your clear braces carelessly. Fortunately, straighter teeth will definitely be part of your future if you remember the above risk factors!
About the Author
Dr. Travis Rottman is one of the top dentists in Sachse, TX. Since starting his dental career in 2011, he’s attended numerous seminars and completed many continuing education hours. Hence, he’s up to date with the latest dental knowledge. His work is also family-oriented, engaging with patients of all ages and providing quality dental care to the Sachse community. Dr. Rottman currently practices at Sachse Family Dentistry and can be reached at his website or by phone at (972)-848-0073.