For most patients, the key advantage of choosing invisible aligners over metal braces is that they're nearly impossible to see when they're on the teeth. However, some patients become frustrated when, after a few days of wear, their aligners take on a yellowish tint and become more apparent. This situation is avoidable. By following these tips, you can keep your invisible aligners clear and bright for the entire 2-week wear cycle.
Brush and floss after every meal.
This is advice that everyone should follow, whether or not they have Invisalign. However, since it takes a little longer to brush your teeth when wearing Invisalign (you have to take the time to remove the aligner), some patients skip brushing sessions. Doing so will contribute to the yellowing of your aligners. Bring your tooth brush with you to work or school, and brush thoroughly after every meal. Remember to brush your aligner, too, and to rinse it thoroughly with clear water before popping it back in.
Use regular toothpaste.
There are so many types of toothpaste in stores that choosing which one to buy can be difficult. However, when you wear aligners, the choice is simple. Go with a basic anti-cavity toothpaste that contains fluoride. Don't use a whitening toothpaste or one specially designed for any other dental worries, unless your dentist specifically recommends doing so. The chemicals in these products may encourage your aligners to yellow.
Be careful what you drink with Invisalign in your mouth.
You have to remove Invisalign to eat, but you can drink with it in your mouth. Unfortunately, many common beverages, such as coffee and cola, can stain Invisalign. Stay away from these and other colored liquids, such as wine, tea and grape juice, when wearing your aligners. If you like these beverages, drink them with your meal when Invisalign is out and stick to water and other clear liquids once you pop your Invisalign back in.
Invisalign is an excellent option for patients who want straighter teeth but don't want to deal with the appearance and pain of braces for a year or longer. It typically takes about the same amount of time to straighten teeth with Invisalign as with regular braces, but since you can remove the aligners to eat and brush your teeth, and since they don't poke into your cheeks like metal brackets, the experience is far more pleasant. Don't let yellow aligners ruin your experience. Follow the tips above, and no one will be able to tell you have an aligner in your mouth.
For more information, talk to a local dentist, like Karla M. Kreger D.D.S.