If you are considering Invisalign® as a way to improve orthodontic concerns, or if you have already received your aligners, there are a number of things you can do to optimize the potential for success. Invisalign® has helped patients all over the world correct common conditions such as teeth misalignment, crowding, and bite irregularities in a more discreet way. Our team here at Thompson Center for Dentistry will help you throughout the Invisalign® treatment process and monitor your progress to ensure the best possible outcome.
Here are some tips on how you can increase the chances of successful Invisalign® results:
Remove Aligners Before Consuming Foods & Drinks
You can remove your aligners to avoid staining the appliances with certain foods and beverages, and to make eating and drinking a bit easier. Remember: foods and beverages that contain staining agents (wine, teas, coffees, sodas, and berries are some of the most common) can discolor your clear plastic aligners and make them more noticeable. It’s also a good idea to brush (or at least thoroughly rinse) your teeth before putting the aligners back on so that any lingering stains don’t transfer to the appliances.
Wear Aligners as Instructed and as Often as Possible
For optimal results, patients should wear their aligners throughout the day and night, taking them off only while eating, drinking, and completing daily oral hygiene regimens. Individuals who remove their aligners for extended periods of time will likely cause unnecessary delays in their treatment plan and reduce the chances of success. The aligners can only really do their job when they’re being worn as much as possible. Typically, we recommend that patients wear their aligners for a minimum of 20-22 hours per day.
Work On Your Speech While Using the Aligners
When you first receive your Invisalign® aligners, you will likely experience a brief adjustment period. It’s common for patients to notice a small lisp at first while the mouth gets accustomed to the aligners. This usually doesn’t last very long; however, you can try speeding up this adjustment process with a little practice. Keep your aligners on while doing some speech exercises. As you practice speaking and enunciating, the initial lisp should continue to fade as the mouth gets more used to the aligners.
Be Sure to Maintain Proper Oral Hygiene Routines
Because Invisalign® aligners are much different than traditional braces that feature metal brackets and wires, daily oral hygiene maintenance is less extensive and more in keeping with your traditional routine. With that in mind, it’s important to remember to stick to the recommended oral hygiene regimen. Patients with Invisalign® are advised to brush after every meal and floss at least once each day. The aligners should also be cleaned regularly. Our team recommends using a toothbrush and warm (not hot) water to clean the appliances. If the water becomes too hot, your aligners could become slightly warped and results could be compromised. We also recommend using antibacterial soap (not toothpaste) to clean them. Many toothpastes contain abrasive agents that may alter the appearance of the aligners and make them less clear.
Do you have questions about Invisalign® or other orthodontic treatments available at our practice? Please contact Thompson Center for Dentistry for additional information.