If you plan to straighten your teeth with Invisalign or a different invisible braces product, then it's important you understand how to protect your teeth during the treatment period. Since your teeth will be covered by the plastic aligners much of the time, harmful bacteria can linger on your teeth, and this will eventually lead to problems with decay.
To proactively protect the health of your teeth during invisible braces treatment, follow each of these tips:
Tip: Be Meticulous About Aligner Cleanliness
Always wash your aligners with antibacterial soft soap before putting them back in your mouth. This is vital because when you take the aligners out and they dry in the air, they become a breeding ground for bacteria. You always need to remove the bacteria growth before putting the aligners back into contact with your teeth. If you skip this important step, it can lead to offensive breath smells and even illness.
Tip: Avoid Consuming Sugary Drinks While Wearing Invisible Braces
It's been known for decades that consuming sugary drinks leads to tooth decay. Consuming sugary drinks while wearing invisible braces traps the sugar between your teeth and the aligners and makes decay happen much more quickly. For this reason, you need to avoid drinking any sugary drinks while you are wearing your aligners.
If you do consume sugary drinks when the aligners are off, then make sure you brush and floss very carefully before putting the aligner trays back in.
Tip: Don't Put Your Aligners Back in After a Meal Without Brushing Your Teeth
As with sugary drinks, food being trapped between your teeth and aligners for an extended period of time is very harmful to your dental health. The food particles may contain sugar molecules and other harmful substances that can damage your tooth enamel and promote decay. While the saliva in your mouth will work to remove some of these harmful things under normal conditions, it isn't able to reach your teeth when the aligners are in place. For this reason, you need to always brush your teeth before replacing your aligners.
Tip: See Your Dentist at the First Sign of Dental Pain or Discomfort
Finally, if you notice any small dark-colored spots on your teeth or experience any pain during your invisible braces treatment, it's vital you see your dentist as soon as possible. This will allow your dentist to catch any tooth decay or other problems in their infancy and stop them before they become bigger issues.