Invisalign Food Restrictions

If you’ve looked into what life is like with Invisalign, you’ll have discovered that one of the biggest benefits is the lack of food restrictions. Unlike traditional metal braces that require many food restrictions, Invisalign clear aligners are removable, so you can just take them out and eat whatever you want. However, it is critical to follow all recommended procedures for eating and drinking with Invisalign. Following these recommendations will help you avoid damage to your affordable Invisalign aligners and your teeth.

What Food Should You Avoid with Invisalign?

When it comes to food and drink, there is really only one major rule with Invisalign – always remove your aligners first, then eat and drink anything you want.

As long as you remove your aligners before eating or drinking, you can enjoy all of your favorite food and drinks – even the bad ones. Braces, brackets, and wires create lots of pockets for food to get stuck. Hard or crunchy food can break off or damage the brackets. Because Invisalign aligners are easily removable, you don’t have to worry about damaging the aligners.

However, if you forget and do eat something with your aligner still in your mouth, you can damage them. Drinking soda or anything besides water can stain your Invisalign aligners. Smoking can cause discoloration, staining, or warping. Never chew gum or mints with your aligners in your mouth.

What Happens If You Eat with Your Invisalign Aligners On?

Eating food with Invisalign aligners can damage, degrade, and discolor your aligners. It can also promote bacterial growth. It’s important to avoid eating or drinking anything but water while wearing your aligners. Once you remove them, you’re free to enjoy whatever you like. 

Remember, your teeth are designed for chewing. They’re strong and sturdy and will break whatever you are eating into small pieces. That chewing strength is great for eating but really bad for your aligners. When you chew wearing your aligners, you risk cracking, bending, or breaking them into pieces. You may also change their shape, which can result in less effective treatment. 

Do you like having white teeth? Who doesn’t? Eating or drinking dark or bright-colored foods like curries, sauces, and beverages like wine, coffee, soda, and sports drinks will stain your aligners. You may think a quick sip won’t hurt. But over the course of your treatment, too many quick sips will add up to stained aligners. 

Always rinse or brush your teeth before putting your Invisalign aligners back in. If you don’t, bacteria or plaque can grow on your aligners and your teeth, promoting decay and gum damage.

Do’s and Don’ts of Eating with Invisalign

You need to wear your Invisalign from 20-22 hours a day for your treatment to be effective. It’s important to only remove your aligners for eating and drinking. Because food and drinks leave residue on your teeth, you should always brush or at least rinse your teeth before putting your aligners back in. 

Brush and floss every day to keep your teeth free of residue or plaque. Improper dental hygiene can lead to bacteria growth on your teeth and inside the aligners, which can lead to decay and/or gum disease.

It’s also very important to avoid drinking sweet or hot drinks and eating anything while the aligners are inside your mouth. Hard or crunchy foods can damage the aligners, and even soft foods can get stuck to the aligners or leave residue on them, causing staining, discoloration, or leading to bacterial growth.

Do’s and Don’ts of Drinking With Invisalign

When wearing Invisalign aligners, it’s important to remove the aligners before drinking anything but water.

Hot beverages like tea or coffee can warp the SmartTrack™ aligner plastic, which can cause them to be ineffective. Dark-colored beverages like red wine, dark sodas, or tea and coffee can cause staining and discoloration to the aligners. Beverages with sugar can damage or discolor your aligners as well as cause bacterial growth on your teeth.

Never chew on ice with aligners in, as this can also damage them.

When removing your aligners to drink, brush or rinse them with water before putting the aligners back in. And be sure to brush and floss every day and wash or soak your aligners regularly to keep plaque from building up on your teeth or on the aligners.

Water, however, is perfectly safe to drink with Invisalign.

Enjoy Invisalign Food Freedom

When you wear Invisalign, you can continue to eat all the foods you love. You don’t have the limitations of conventional braces. If you love chewy foods or crunchy foods, from popcorn to pizza crust to gummy candy, you can have all of it – as long as you remove Invisalign first. If there is one thing you won’t have to worry about with Invisalign, it’s changing your diet.

For the best Invisalign results and the happiest, healthiest smile, remove your aligners before meals or drinking! You can still eat anything you like, but you’ll keep your aligners clean and working properly for long-lasting, beautiful results and a lifetime of smiles!

Want to know more about the Invisalign treatment process? Contact Dr. McAllister, your local Omaha orthodontist and Fremont orthodontist for a free consultation today.