How Should I Treat My Teeth When I Have My Clear Aligners In?
While you have your aligners in, you shouldn’t be eating or drinking anything other than water. Doing so can damage your aligners and set your treatment back or cause your aligners to stain. When you first start aligner treatment or a new tray, you should be more gentle with your teeth. Try not to eat anything particularly hot or cold (like ice cream or popsicles) or overly crunchy (like chips). These foods will irritate your teeth more than usual because your teeth are more sensitive since the aligners are gradually moving them to their new positions.2 If the side effects are bothering you too much, talk to your orthodontist. They may be able to help change your treatment plan to make the aligners more comfortable.
How Will My Clear Aligners Affect My Speech?
Clear aligners may cause some minor changes in speech such as a slight lisp. It’s important to know that this is temporary and will go away as treatment progresses and you get more used to wearing your aligners.3 Remember: You can always take your aligners out for short periods of time if you need a break or have an important event where you will be speaking. If you are worried or feel like your speech is being dramatically affected, you can talk to your doctor and they will help address your concerns.
Are There Any Other Possible Issues?
Since you don’t notice your aligners as much, you may end up chewing gum or biting your fingernails while your aligners are in and risk damaging them or wearing away at them with excessive use. If that happens, your dentist will likely recommend switching out your aligners for new ones to prevent even more damage from occurring.
How Do I Know If It’s Working?
The first thing you should do is look at your teeth. Are they shifting into their new position? If so, then that’s a good sign; it means your treatment is progressing normally. However, don’t expect things to happen overnight. It takes time and persistence. Rest assured, by continuing your treatment you will see results in due time.
If you have some concerns along the way, contact your Spark Provider or visit your orthodontist as soon as possible. He or she can make adjustments if necessary and help ensure a successful result! Be sure to ask about normal side effects during clear aligner treatment as well so that you know what’s normal and what isn’t.