All About Eating and Drinking With Invisalign
While most people are aware they need to take their aligners out before eating a meal, it isn’t always as clear when it comes to sipping on a drink or chewing gum with Invisalign. The team at Gardner Orthodontics is here to help clarify! In this post, our Richmond orthodontists will answer some of the common questions we get from patients about eating and drinking with Invisalign.
Can You Chew Gum With Invisalign?
Yes, you can chew gum with Invisalign if you remove your aligners first. But, be mindful of the fact that you should wear your aligners for about 22 hours per day for the best results. When you account for the time you have your aligners out to eat, drink, and brush and floss your teeth, that doesn’t leave a ton of room for chewing gum with Invisalign, but the occasional piece is perfectly fine.
Dr. Gardner, Dr. La Rochelle and Dr. Tang don’t recommend chewing gum with your Invisalign aligners in your mouth, however. Sugary gum is super sticky and difficult to clean off. What about chewing sugar-free gum with Invisalign? While sugar-free gum is less sticky, it still inevitably breaks down and clings to the plastic, making a mess. So, your best bet is to take your clear aligners out before chewing any type of gum.
Can You Drink Coffee With Invisalign?
Again, you can drink coffee with Invisalign if you take your aligners out beforehand. Hot beverages like coffee and tea can warp the thermoplastic material that Invisalign is made from and affect the fit of your aligners. Since each tray is designed to achieve specific tooth movements, damaging your Invisalign with hot coffee could mean needing to have a replacement tray made.
After having a cup of coffee, rinse your mouth out with water before putting your aligners back in. This will ensure no coffee gets trapped under your aligners, which could stain your teeth and the clear plastic.
Can You Drink Soda With Invisalign?
Soda is one of the worst drinks for your teeth in general. Most varieties, including diet sodas, are acidic and erode tooth enamel. Non-diet sodas are also extremely high in sugar. The bacteria in your mouth feed on the sugar and, when they do, release acids that leach minerals from your already weakened enamel. When this happens frequently enough, it can cause tooth decay.
So, while, yes, you can drink soda with Invisalign after taking out your aligners, we would recommend drinking it in moderation. After all, you’re investing in your smile with orthodontic treatment and the last thing you want is a cavity.
It can be tempting to leave your aligners in place for a sip or two, but this isn’t a good idea. Your aligners fit snugly against your teeth and saliva can’t flow freely beneath them to wash away sugars and bacteria like it normally would. If soda gets under your aligners, it will sit against your teeth, prolonging the acid attacks and increasing your risk of cavities.
To keep your teeth healthy and strong, take your aligners out before drinking anything aside from plain water and then rinse your mouth with water or brush your teeth before putting your aligners back in.
Can You Drink Water With Invisalign?
Yes! The only thing you should drink with your Invisalign aligners on is plain water. Water doesn’t contain sugars or starches and can’t cause cavities. Plus, water is clear so it won’t stain your aligners like coffee, tea and wine. In fact, if you’re experiencing bad breath or dry mouth during Invisalign treatment, frequently drinking water will help. As you drink, the water lubricates your mouth, stimulates saliva production and washes away odor-causing bacteria.
Can you eat lollipops or hard candy with Invisalign?
Just like soda, eating a lollipop or hard candy while wearing your Invisalign aligners can lead to sugary residue working its way under your aligners and sitting against your teeth. Take your aligners out before indulging in candy. If you’re big on lollipops and hard candies, consider switching to candy that is sugar-free. After you finish your treat, brush your teeth and put your aligners back on.
Can you eat any type of food with your Invisalign aligners in?
While there are no Invisalign food restrictions, this only applies to the times when you’re not wearing your clear aligners. You generally should not eat while wearing your aligners unless instructed by Dr. Gardner, Dr. La Rochelle, or Dr. Tang to do so. Even a quick snack can get stuck under your aligners or damage them. To maintain the integrity of your Invisalign trays and ensure your teeth are clean, always take your aligners out before meals and snacks and brush your teeth after eating.
Are there guidelines for eating with Invisalign attachments?
In order to achieve more complex tooth movements, Dr. Gardner, Dr. Tang and Dr. La Rochelle may recommend Invisalign attachments. These tooth-colored buttons are bonded to your teeth and give your aligners something to push against in order to apply the right amount of force in the right direction. This improves the speed of your Invisalign treatment.
While eating with Invisalign attachments doesn’t require quite as much diligence as eating with braces, you will still need to be careful. As for what not to eat with Invisalign attachments, try to avoid really hard and sticky foods, such as hard candy, ice, nuts, caramel and sugary gum. Biting into these types of foods can lead to a broken attachment, which will require an extra trip to the orthodontist’s office.
- Always remove your aligners before eating or drinking anything aside from plain water. Eating or drinking with your Invisalign in your mouth can increase your risk of cavities and damage and/or stain your aligners.
- After eating, brush your teeth before you put your aligners back on. If you have a sugary, acidic or pigmented beverage, rinse your mouth out with water afterwards.
- Even though you can chew gum with Invisalign and have things like soda and hard candy, try to enjoy sugary treats in moderation or switch to sugar-free options to keep your teeth healthy during your treatment.
- Use caution when eating with Invisalign attachments and avoid biting into really hard or sticky foods.
Schedule a Complimentary Consultation With a Leading Richmond, VA Invisalign Orthodontist
If you’re ready to get straight teeth and a healthy bite with Invisalign, schedule a free consultation at Gardner Orthodontics. Our Diamond Plus Invisalign providers are experts at using clear aligners to treat any case. We’ll also fill you in on everything you need to know about treatment, including eating and drinking with Invisalign. We do everything we can to make your journey to a beautiful smile a successful one!