It is an exciting time for most people when they find out that they are suitable for clear aligners.
In years gone by, the only way for adults to straighten their teeth was using a metal brace which, for obvious reasons, was rarely followed through on. In modern times, if you have severe or complex cases of misalignment, your dentist will probably recommend that you still wear a traditional brace but today, most less severe cases can be treated using invisible aligners or even clear braces.
However, when you are given your removable aligners, to help with the adjustment period, there are a few things that you should know. Especially if you are given Invisalign Macleod to help straighten your smile!
Sadly, even in 2021, there is no such thing as pain-free orthodontics.
Clear aligners, while more manageable and gentle than regular braces, are still designed to move your teeth which is going to cause a bit of discomfort in your mouth. To manage these sensations, most dentists will advise that you use pain relief such as paracetamol.
Your dentist will have told you that in order for any invisible aligner to work on schedule, it needs to be kept in your mouth for a minimum of 22 hours per day.
While that sounds simple as a starting point, it means that for the first few weeks of use, you will need to be strict with your timing.
Remember, if you fail to stay within this time slot for taking your aligners out, you run the risk of slowing down the treatment or causing your teeth to revert to their former positions.
Your aligners will be made from a firm plastic, which is going to rub against the soft tissues in your mouth. Ouch!
To ensure you keep the aligners in, it is worth asking your dentist for some dental wax. The wax will act as a buffer for your soft tissues, making the entire process more manageable.
You will want to keep your aligners clear and so, there will be some cleaning involved.
While it can be tempting to use hot water or aggressive brushing techniques to do so, these methods can cause damage to the aligners and can even permanently warp their shape.
Aim to use a soft-bristle brush and, if needed, a toothpaste to clean the aligners. Do not use mouthwashes, as these can cause staining.
One of the best things about this aligner is that it comes with a tracking app to use on your smartphone. So, to keep your dentist up to speed on how the treatment is going, all you have to do is take a selfie and send it to them via the app.
It is important that you stay in regular contact with your dental team and keep any appointments made. This will help your team to spot any issues that may have been missed in a selfie and will ensure that any potential problems are caught early.
Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.