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Tips to look after your Invisalign braces

Over 4 million people worldwide have now chosen Invisalign as their teeth straightening choice. Below, we explore further what it is, what it involves and how to look after your Invisalign braces.

What is Invisalign?

Invisalign and Invisalign Teen are a series of aligners to straighten out the teeth, made from clear, strong, medical grade plastic. They are custom-made to fit the teeth and gums, making them virtually invisible to the naked eye.

There are no metal brackets or wires, which can sometimes irritate the mouth and gums of the wearer. They also can be removed for eating, brushing and flossing or if you have a particular event which you’d like to attend aligner-free.

What is involved?

Initially, an appointment should be made with your dentist to discuss Invisalign and to let them assess your teeth and determine whether it is suitable for you. The next stage is to have X-rays, photos and dental impressions taken from which a digital treatment plan is produced – the Clincheck®.

The Clincheck® enables you to see the predicted final result and all the stages leading up to it. Once the final position of the teeth as seen in the ClinCheck has been approved the aligners will be manufactured and then fitted by your dentist.

The aligners must be worn for approximately two weeks at a time for around 22 hours per day and the process typically takes 6-12 months depending on the complexity of the case. The teeth will slowly move into the desired position, and your dentist will ask to see you every six weeks so to check the progress of the treatment.

How to care for your Invisalign aligners

  • Dry saliva and plaque is a breeding ground for smelly bacteria so make sure you rinse your aligners when you remove them.
  • Soak your aligners in Invisalign cleaning crystals or denture/retainer cleaner.
  • Brush and floss your teeth before reinserting your aligners.
  • Brush your aligners gently as brushing too hard can cause visible scratches.
  • Try cleaning them with clear anti-bacterial soap.
  • Don’t eat or drink anything but water while wearing Invisalign as they may become stained and attract odours.
  • Don’t use toothpaste to clean your aligners as many kinds of toothpaste, especially whitening ones, are abrasive and dull your aligners or create small pockets for bacteria to breed.