Invisalign® treatment straightens the teeth and corrects the bite by progressing patients through a series of clear, plastic aligner trays. Many patients prefer Invisalign to traditional braces because it is much more discreet, convenient, and comfortable.
Although Invisalign is completely metal-free and does not irritate the teeth, gums, and jaw the way braces tend to, patients should still expect some discomfort as they adjust to treatment.
At Staten Island Aesthetic & Implant Dentist, Drs. Alex and Jason Hecht offer tips to reduce Invisalign discomfort so that our Staten Island, NY patients can enjoy the benefits of Invisalign treatment without any unnecessary irritation.
Use Over-the-counter Medication
Typically, the discomfort that Invisalign causes is not too severe. Taking pain medication can help most patients manage any discomfort. Over-the-counter pain medications like acetaminophen and ibuprofen control soreness to make adjusting to Invisalign easier.
Most patients only need to use pain medication a few times in the first few days of treatment, or within the first day or two of switching to a new set of aligners.
Apply Cold Compresses
Cold compresses are another option available to patients who are experiencing discomfort. When applied to the outside of the cheeks, cold compresses or ice packs can reduce swelling and ease tenderness in the gums and jaw.
Cold compresses can be applied for 10 to 15 minutes at a time, several times a day, as needed until discomfort subsides.
Stick with Soft Foods
One of the benefits of Invisalign is that aligners can be removed when patients eat. As a result, they don’t have to deal with the food restrictions associated with braces.
However, as you are adjusting to new aligner trays, it is probably best to avoid foods that are especially hard or chewy. This gives the jaw time to rest and avoids placing excess pressure on the teeth or gums.
Within a few days of beginning treatment or switching aligners, most of our Staten Island patients should feel comfortable enough to enjoy all of their favorite foods.
Wear Your Aligners Regularly
If your aligners are irritating the gums or causing discomfort, it may be tempting to remove the aligners and give the jaw, teeth, and gums a rest. However, this is not recommended.
You will adjust to the Invisalign aligners faster with consistent wear. Unless you are eating or brushing your teeth, your aligners should remain in place. With regular use, you should adjust to your aligners within a few days.
Switch to New Aligners at Night
Besides the initial Invisalign adjustment phase, patients may experience slight discomfort when they progress to a new set of aligners. As treatment goes on, most patients find that they adjust more quickly to each set of aligner trays.
By switching to a new set of aligners at night, many people are able to sleep through the initial phase of discomfort.
At Staten Island Aesthetic & Implant Dentist, patient comfort is one of our top priorities. If you would like more tips for adjusting to Invisalign, or simply have questions about the treatment process, we’d be happy to help.
Contact us online at your earliest convenience, or call (718) 705-4434 to set up an appointment with Dr. Jason or Alex Hecht in Staten Island.