Dealing with Invisalign Pain and Discomfort
Since its inception, Invisalign has become one of the most popular orthodontic treatments. However, this doesn’t come without its own set of problems and pain for some patients. If you’re experiencing discomfort or pain while wearing your Invisalign aligners, don’t worry – there are ways to ease the pain. Keep reading for tips on dealing with Invisalign pain and discomfort.
But first, here’s a refresher course to get you up to speed on Invisalign.
What is Invisalign?
Invisalign is an orthodontic treatment that uses clear, removable aligners to gradually straighten the teeth. Invisalign is popular because it’s virtually invisible, meaning most people won’t even know you’re wearing them.
How Does Invisalign Work?
The first step in the Invisalign process is to visit an orthodontist or dentist who is certified to provide Invisalign. During your consultation, they will take X-rays, photos, and dental impressions of your teeth which will be used to create a digital 3D model of your smile.
From there, your orthodontist will develop a treatment plan specifically for you, which will map out the movement of your teeth.
Once your treatment plan is created, your custom-made Invisalign aligners will be fabricated. You will be given a new set of aligners to wear every two weeks, and as you progress through each stage, your teeth will gradually shift into place. The entire process usually takes about 12-18 months, but this will vary from person to person.
Are There Any Side Effects of Invisalign?
Invisalign is generally a very safe and effective treatment with few side effects. However, as with any orthodontic treatment, there are some potential side effects that you should be aware of, which include:
- Discomfort or pain: This is the most common side effect of Invisalign and is usually caused by the aligners putting pressure on your teeth. This is perfectly normal and will go away as your teeth adjust to the aligners.
- Dry mouth: Wearing Invisalign aligners can cause you to produce less saliva, which can lead to dry mouth. To combat this, drink plenty of water and chew sugar-free gum.
- Irritation of the gums: The aligners can also irritate your gums, but this can be avoided by brushing and flossing regularly.
Tips For Dealing with Pain and Discomfort from Invisalign
If you’re experiencing any pain or discomfort while wearing your Invisalign aligners, there are a few things you can do to ease the discomfort.
Use Orthodontic Wax
If your aligners are causing irritation to your gums, lips, or cheeks, the best thing you can do is use orthodontic wax. This will create a barrier between your aligners and soft tissues, preventing further irritation.
To apply the wax, simply place a small amount on your finger and press it onto the area that is bothering you. The wax will hold the aligner in place and should help ease discomfort.
Rinse with warm salt water
If your aligners are causing soreness or irritation in your mouth, rinsing with warm salt water can help to soothe your gums and reduce inflammation. Mix ½ teaspoon salt with 8 ounces of warm water and rinse for 30 seconds.
Take a Break from your Invisalign Aligners
Wearing your Invisalign aligners for too long can cause discomfort and pain. If you’re experiencing pain, take a break from wearing your aligners for a few hours. This will give your teeth and gums a chance to rest and recover.
Use over-the-counter pain medication
If the pain is severe, you can take over-the-counter pain medication such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen. Just be sure to follow the instructions on the bottle and do not exceed the recommended dosage.
Apply a Cold Compress
Applying a cold compress to your cheeks can also help to reduce pain and inflammation. Simply wrap a cold, damp cloth around your face for 10-15 minutes at a time.
How Long Does the Discomfort Last?
The discomfort associated with Invisalign treatment is usually only temporary and will go away as your teeth adjust to the aligners. However, if you’re still experiencing pain or discomfort after trying home remedies, be sure to consult with your orthodontist.
What Are the Benefits of Invisalign?
Invisalign is a popular treatment choice for both adults and teens because it offers many benefits over traditional braces, including:
- Discreet: One of the biggest advantages of Invisalign is that they are virtually invisible, making them much less noticeable than metal braces.
- Comfortable: Invisalign aligners are made of a smooth, comfortable plastic which is gentle on your gums and teeth.
- Removable: Unlike braces, you can remove the aligners to eat, brush, and floss, which makes for easier oral care.
- No food restrictions: Since you can remove the aligners, there are no food restrictions which means you can eat whatever you want!
Is Invisalign worth it?
While Invisalign treatment is not for everyone, it can be a great option for those seeking a discreet, comfortable, and removable orthodontic treatment. If you’re considering Invisalign, be sure to consult with an orthodontist to see if it’s the right treatment for you.