We've all heard how the food industry has increasingly saturated our packaged food and drinks over the last decade with sugar and non-nutritive sweeteners. And, of course, it's no secret that sugar causes dental cavities.
High-sugar products like sports drinks, energy drinks, sodas, and even the drinks that are advertised with health benefits are easily accessible and enjoyed by so many of us. Popping into convenience stores and grabbing a drink can be an everyday occurrence.
But if you or your child are doing Invisalign treatment instead of traditional braces, why should that matter so much? Most of us have heard how "braces can cause white scars" over the years.
I'm here to debunk that myth!
Yes, with traditional braces, food can easily get wedged in between the braces and wires. If you're unable to brush immediately after eating, that food (with its high sugar content) will start to damage the tooth enamel.
But let's say you don't have braces. You have Invisalign. That means you're taking your Invisalign aligners out while enjoying those high-sugar drinks and snacks. So, no food traps. What's there to be concerned about?
Yes, Invisalign aligners are removed before eating. This takes a big obstacle out of the way when it comes to keeping food off your teeth. They should also be removed if you're drinking anything other than water.
However, if you put your Invisalign aligners back in after enjoying your snack and drink, then go 4-8 hours without brushing, you'll get the same effect as braces. Food and sugar are trapped in your teeth, leading to cavities and scarring.
The big message here is that if you're not brushing your teeth at least twice a day, then even with removable aligners, the sugar from your food and drinks will stay on your teeth. This will lead to plaque and permanent white scars on the surface of your teeth.
So, it's not braces or Invisalign aligners that are causing the plaque buildup and white scars, it's the lack of brushing.
Wearing Invisalign aligners isn't a free pass not to brush your teeth. It just makes it so much easier to brush and floss when you don't have braces and wires to maneuver your toothbrush around.
So whether you're in braces or Invisalign, make that effort to limit the sugary snacks and drinks and always brush after meals. Your beautiful results at the end of your orthodontic treatment will be so worth the extra effort!