Choosing Invisalign to straighten your smile comes with the perk of removable aligners. But should you keep them in or out during meals?
Eating with Invisalign aligners in place is never recommended. With some simple precautions, you can eat all your favorite foods and achieve a healthier, straighter smile with Invisalign.
Benefits of Invisalign for straightening teeth
Invisalign clear aligners offer an effective yet discreet solution. This popular orthodontic treatment uses a series of customized, removable plastic trays to incrementally shift your teeth.
Unlike fixed braces, Invisalign aligners are practically invisible. They can be taken out for eating, drinking, brushing and flossing. So you can enjoy your favorite foods without worry during treatment.
Invisalign trays are also more comfortable than braces. The smooth plastic won't irritate your cheeks and gums like wires and brackets can. There are no bits of metal in your mouth.
Whether you want subtle teeth straightening as an adult or a teen, Invisalign's combination of convenience, comfort and invisibility makes it an appealing choice over conventional braces. With a series of barely detectable trays, you can transform your smile discreetly and comfortably.
What to do when eating with Invisalign
- Do brush before reinserting aligners. It's crucial to brush after meals to remove food debris before putting your aligners back in. This prevents staining or trapped particles.
- Do remove aligners before eating. Taking aligners out protects them from damage while you eat and allows you to clean your teeth thoroughly afterward.
- Do carry a toothbrush. If you can't brush after eating, keep a toothbrush with you to brush quickly before reinserting aligners. This maintains cleanliness.
- Do choose aligner-safe foods. Avoid very hot, sticky, crunchy or chewy foods that could remove or damage aligners.
- Do clean aligners daily. Use aligner cleaning products to keep them fresh.
Here are some great foods to eat with Invisalign:
- Soft, saucy foods like pasta, mashed potatoes, soup, eggs, oatmeal, bananas, cooked vegetables and shredded meats. These won't damage aligners.
- Dairy like Greek yogurt, cheese, pudding, and milkshakes. Dairy is soft and strengthens teeth.
- Lean proteins like fish, chicken, tofu, beans, or peanut butter. These foods are soft and rich in nutrients.
- Meal replacement shakes or smoothies. Blend up a nutritious drink for on-the-go meals.
- Soft, peeled fruits like applesauce, cantaloupe, and honeydew melon. Avoid hard, crunchy fruits.
- Whole grain breads, muffins, and crackers. Choose soft, bite-size pieces.
What not to do when eating with Invisalign
- Don't eat sticky foods like gum, caramel, or taffy, as they can loosen aligners or remove them entirely.
- Don't chew on hard foods like ice, nuts, or popcorn kernels, which could crack or deform the aligners.
- Don't drink sugary or acidic drinks like soda, sports drinks or juice, as they promote tooth decay. Stick to water or milk.
- Don't smoke or chew tobacco. The chemicals can discolor aligners and irritate gums, slowing treatment.
- Don't bite into crunchy raw veggies and fruits. Cut them into small pieces first.
- Don't skip cleaning aligners. Brush regularly with aligner cleaner and avoid staining foods like coffee, tea, or red wine.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the benefits of Invisalign?
Benefits include invisible appearance, removable aligners, less pain and discomfort, and shorter treatment time compared to braces.
How often do I change aligners?
Aligners are changed every 1-2 weeks to continue moving your teeth to the desired position. You'll go through 20-30 aligner sets in total.
Invisalign on the Upper West Side
Invisalign's clear aligners offer a discreet, comfortable way to straighten your smile. While no foods are completely off-limits, being mindful about what you eat can optimize treatment success.