Invisalign and other clear aligners are a popular way to correct many types of bite problems. Among other advantages over traditional braces, they’re practically invisible, and you remove them when you eat. But as with any type of orthodontic treatment that repositions your teeth, there can be some discomfort or pain associated with new clear aligner sets. So, we wanted to offer some tips on how to relieve Invisalign pain at home.
Treating Pain Caused by Invisalign or Other Clear Aligners
- An over-the-counter painkiller – Common OTC pain remedies like a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) such as ibuprofen, naproxen, or aspirin, or another type like acetaminophen, can help. Follow the package instructions for dosing.
- Topical oral pain reliever – A product like Orajel reduces pain when applied directly to your sore teeth or gums.
- A cold compress – An ice pack wrapped in a towel or other cold compress is a simple, drug-free option for how to relieve Invisalign pain. Apply it to the outside of your mouth where the pain is with moderate pressure for about 10 minutes.
- Eat or drink something really cold – Remove your clear aligner trays and enjoy some ice cream, a frozen beverage, or even an ice-cold glass of water.
- An aligner removal tool – It takes a little practice to easily get your clear aligners in and out of your mouth and make sure they’re positioned properly. Until you get good at it, this can sometimes cause some discomfort. Aligner removal tools are available that make this process smoother and less likely to cause discomfort.
- Put new trays in shortly before bedtime – Most pain and discomfort happens when you put in a new clear aligner trays, as they will fit more snugly. If you put them in an hour or so before you go to bed, you should sleep through the peak period of adjustment.
- Eat soft foods – Yes, you remove Invisalign and other clear aligner trays when you eat. But when you have new clear aligner trays, your teeth and mouth may still get sore, and making them work hard when you eat can make it worse. So, when you have a new set, stick to softer foods.
- Wear the clear aligners as prescribed – You should be wearing Invisalign and most other clear aligners for about 22 hours per day, only removing them to eat, drink, and brush your teeth. Don’t take them off more often, and put them back on right away. If you don’t wear them for enough time, they’ll always be tighter when you do wear them, which increases the likelihood of pain or discomfort.