Have you heard that mouth pain or sore teeth are common during treatment with clear aligners? Though this is true, you shouldn’t let it scare you away from this orthodontic treatment option.
Remember the last time you pushed yourself to do another 10 reps or walk a little further and felt a little sore afterwards? It's the same concept here: as your teeth gently move into their prescribed positions to help you achieve a straighter smile, they may feel a little sore while the aligners are doing their job.
Today, we’ll discuss the challenges you may face during and following Invisalign treatment, and how you can deal with the aftereffects.
How much will my teeth hurt, and why?
Though not everyone feels soreness or pain during the treatment process, many will; some describe it as a light pressure on their teeth on the first day they switch to a new clear aligner tray.
Your teeth will only move .2 millimetres during your Invisalign treatment from the first day to the seventh day that you wear a new clear aligner tray.
Invisalign trays are made of smooth plastic with no wires to poke or prod sensitive areas of your mouth, which can cause irritation. This plastic may also have a little more adaptability than other stiff plastics, so Invisalign pain should be minimal. Furthermore, your clear aligners will be custom-made to fit your smile.
Home Remedies for Invisalign Clear Aligner Pain
If you experience any discomfort as your teeth adjust to their new positions, the following home remedies can help:
Switch to your new aligners at night.
Because you'll be sleeping, switching to your new aligners at night may be the best option. This gives your mouth about 8 hours to get used to them, and any discomfort, pain, or tenderness you feel may go away by the time you wake up.
Use dental wax.
Are your teeth or gums hurting as your clear aligners realign your teeth? Dental wax may be beneficial. Apply a small amount between your teeth and your aligners, or to any tender or sore areas. The wax will act as a cushion for your teeth as they adjust to your aligners.
Rinse with warm salt water.
Your mouth sores might go away with a quick swish of salt water. One cup of warm water only needs 12 teaspoons. Try it once every few hours for three to four days, and then continue brushing, flossing, and using other effective at-home oral care techniques.
Eat cold foods.
Some patients report that after switching aligners, they feel better after indulging in a 100% fruit Popsicle or a cold ice pop. Remember to take out your clear aligners before eating.
Take an over-the-counter painkiller.
If everything else fails, over-the-counter pain relievers may be just what you need to help relieve mouth pain caused by a new set of clear aligners.
Apply an ice pack.
A sore mouth can be relieved and swelling reduced with the aid of an ice pack, a towel dampened with cold water, or a cold compress resembling a cold Popsicle.
See your dentist regularly.
One of the most important things to keep doing as you progress through your treatment with clear aligners is to see your dentist regularly - every four to six weeks.
They will follow up with you to see how your smile is doing and how things are going. They will also address any concerns you may have and offer advice.
Another benefit of clear aligners is that they rarely need to be adjusted, which means your dentist won't have to tighten them as frequently as they would with traditional braces, which can be uncomfortable.