ne of the primary reasons that patients choose Invisalign over those old style metal braces is the ease of attending to their dental hygiene needs through the entire time they must rely on orthodontics.
The difference in this ability to place close attention to dental care is very relevant. It seems quite often that people make it through orthodontic treatment with metal braces only to find a nasty surprise at the end!
Due to their inability to competently navigate closely around the metal brackets and under the wires, they didn’t floss or brush as well as they thought they had. The end result. Teeth with pitting and decay awaiting repair by the dentist.
We reached out to Dr. Holly Gregory, a cosmetic dentist who specializes in Invisalign braces in Humble, TX, for her take on this issue.
As it turns out, patients who wear Invisalign indeed have a much easier time of caring for their teeth during the orthodontic process. Take a look.
Why Invisalign Patients Have an Easy Time Caring for Teeth During Orthodontics
In case anyone reading is unfamiliar with Invisalign, let’s provide a quick overview. Invisalign orthodontia involves a series of clear removable trays which are cast through 3D imaging. This means they are a precise fit to each patient; better yet, they are removable.
This portability means the patient can put the trays in and out of the mouth to eat, play sports, or, most importantly, to take care of all those essential oral hygiene needs. The concept is vastly different and more flexible than metal braces!
5 Dental Care Tips During Invisalign Treatment
Here are a few routine care tips for Invisalign patients.
1. Brush your teeth, as usual, two to three times daily
Just as before you started wearing Invisalign, you will continue to brush two or three times each day. Remove your trays, set them aside for two minutes, and treat your pearly whites to a two minute, thorough brushing. You’d be surprised at how long two minutes is…don’t skimp at that time!
If you have difficulty reaching your back teeth, choose a toothbrush with a smaller head. And, if your gums are sensitive, opt for a gentler, soft-bristled brush.
2. Choose a fluoride toothpaste
Have you ever stood looking at the toothpaste display in the big box store and wondered what kind you should purchase? The sheer array of products on the market is so overwhelming that it can be confusing to some!
Despite the flashy packaging and claims of natural goodness touted by some brands, a good old-fashioned fluoride toothpaste is still the most practical choice. Fluoride helps to strengthen your teeth and wards off premature tooth decay.
3. Perform a daily flossing
As important as ever, you should continue to perform daily flossing. While your Invisalign trays are removed for brushing, floss between every tooth in a sawing motion. This action helps you to loosen and remove food from between the teeth.
Without daily flossing, you will be prone to tooth decay and bad breath.
4. Clean your Invisalign trays daily
Here is where your dental care tips begin to vary slightly from routine dental care.
Each time you remove your trays, give them a quick rinse in warm water. You can eliminate plaque buildup that causes decayed teeth and bacteria that forms bad breath by brushing the liners with a soft bristle toothbrush.
Once daily, soak your trays in warm water with either Invisalign cleaning crystals or denture cleaner and brush them. Give them a thorough rinse, then reinsert them.
Resist the temptation to use toothpaste to give your tray a minty flavor—this can cause damage and discoloration!
5. Store your trays when you’re not wearing them
When you remove your trays to eat, play sports, or at any other time, place them into a case. Leaving them sitting out in the air exposes them to bacteria and dust particle.
And, when you leave your trays lying about, you are more likely to lose them! We have heard of them getting tossed in the trash mistakenly or even about dogs eating them!
The Bottom Line on Dental Hygiene and Invisalign
Taking care of your teeth during Invisalign treatment is not complicated. It requires your routine care plus the additional task of cleaning your liners. Not so bad when you compare this to trying to lace dental floss under metal wires, is it?