Clear aligners are removable, meaning that you’ll be able to enjoy not having dietary restrictions during your treatment. But below, our Family Dental Care - Downtown dentists explain some other things you should know about eating and drinking when undergoing treatment with clear aligners.
Can you eat with clear aligners in?
One of the main features of clear aligner treatment is that you won’t need to restrict your diet.
Unlike traditional braces, there are no metal brackets or wires for food particles to get stuck in between. And your custom-made clear aligners will be made precisely for your mouth’s shape. Because clear aligners can be removed, you’ll be free to keep eating and drinking all the things you love.
Below you will find some helpful tips from our Prince George dentists about how to eat with clear aligners.
It is essential to remove your clear aligners to eat or drink anything but water.
You should only drink cold water while wearing your clear aligners. Remove them before consuming foods or beverages other than water, as sipping on dark or sugary drinks while wearing your aligners can result in plaque building up.
Eating with your clear aligners in could lead to stains, cracks or other damage to your aligners. Gum will definitely stick to aligners and cause a mess (trust us on this one).
Hot beverages such as tea, hot chocolate and coffee can leave stains or discolouration that will be difficult to remove.
Always brush your teeth then rinse your clear aligners before putting them back in.
You should never place your clear aligners in your mouth after eating without first brushing your teeth since food particles can get trapped between your teeth and your aligners and cause bacteria to grow, which will increase your risk of cavities and tooth decay.
Just like with braces, oral hygiene is essential to ensure you achieve the smile you want. If you are unable to brush properly after eating or drinking, your best bet is to rinse your mouth and your aligners with water before putting them back on your teeth.
Schedule your mealtimes carefully.
Though you don’t need to restrict which foods you eat, you should plan your meal times carefully.
In order to hit the 20 to 22 hours per day wear time you need with clear aligners, you’ll want to be mindful of the total time that you remove them for each day.
To see the best results, you should keep them in your mouth as much as possible. Though you can remove the aligners when brushing, flossing, drinking and eating, try not to overdo the time they are out of your mouth, and ensure you are wearing them for at least 20 hours each day.
Plan to reduce your snacking.
Because you have to remove your clear aligners each time you eat and then brush your teeth, you’ll probably find yourself cutting back on snacking quite a bit and being more thoughtful about what you eat as well as when you eat.
On the plus side, you may see your health improve along with your teeth becoming straighter.
You may want to put your clear aligners in and remove them in private.
Especially at the beginning of your treatment, you may want to use a restroom when removing and placing your clear aligners in your mouth. Since they fit your teeth so snugly, some patients have told us they can be a little bit challenging to remove until you get the hang of quickly popping them in and out - a task you may not want to try in public.