As a new Invisalign patient, you need to know that it will be challenging. Even so, we assure you that surviving your first week after treatment does get easier!
Following are some tips and tricks we believe will make your first week a positive experience.
Your First Checkup
Now that you have been fitted with Invisalign, you need to visit your dentist as soon as possible. This is the best way for them to ensure that Invisalign fits correctly and that there are no underlying issues or medical problems that should be addressed.
Protect Your Tongue
Your tongue is one of the most sensitive areas of your mouth that can be injured during these initial days. You don’t want to nip it, but you also don’t want to let it get caught between your teeth, either. That’s why you need to cover up your tongue at all times. It could be as simple as wearing a retainer in your mouth at night. Better yet, purchase a tongue protector from Invisalign right away and make sure you use it when you sleep.
Be Gentle With Your Appliances
During the first days of wear, be aware of some discomfort. You may feel slight pressure or a small amount of pain in your teeth and gums. This is normal and will be gone within a few days. The most important thing to keep in mind during this time is that you need to take it easy with your appliances, especially the aligners. Invisalign cost a lot, and you shouldn’t remove them unless specifically instructed by your dentist. For example, if your aligners get damaged or food becomes lodged, your dentist will recommend removal. Handle your aligners with care and resist the urge to talk, eat and brush teeth while wearing them.
Check Your Appliances Each Night
Before going to bed, check all of your appliances for cleanliness. Clean off any leftover food particles from around your teeth and on your appliance edges. Have your toothbrush and toothpaste ready to ensure you do not miss a single surface. Cleaning off the residue will help prevent bacteria from living in your mouth during the night!
Chew With Your Molars
During the first week after treatment, you should chew with your molars (back teeth) instead of your incisors (front teeth). This will allow you to muffle your bite, which might otherwise cause some discomfort.
Adjust the Time You Wear Your Appliances
You will get specific instructions on how long you should wear your aligners for each day or night. You must listen carefully to what your dentist says. Do not increase the time you wear your aligners without first discussing it with your dentist. If at any time during this initial period, experience pain, remove your appliance immediately and contact your dentist for guidance. You may need to adjust the duration of wear to make sure you are comfortable throughout the day or night.
You Are Not Alone: Dealing with Irritation
Be patient and remember that everyone who has worn braces or Invisalign is familiar with these symptoms. The most common irritation occurs on your gums and tongue. You may feel a pinch of pain, tenderness, and soreness from the pressure your aligners are putting on them.
If this is the case, use protection (such as a retainer at night) for a few days until it subsides. You can also help reduce discomfort by brushing with toothpaste that contains fluoride. You can purchase this from your local dentist or drug store.
Treat your pain and discomfort
You can treat pain and discomfort with ice. Wrap ice cubes in a cloth or napkin and hold the wrapped cubes against your mouth for about 5 to 10 minutes. You can also use dentist-recommended gel-type sore soothers. If the pain and discomfort are extreme, you should use ibuprofen and acetaminophen to reduce inflammation and ease discomfort until you see your orthodontist for further treatment.
Invisalign is a great way to straighten your teeth without enduring the usual discomfort of traditional metal braces. Even though there are some common irritations, almost everyone who uses Invisalign experiences them. Don’t let this fact stop you from making the switch. Just remember that with proper care and guidance from your dentist, you can make it through the first week after treatment without trouble.