Invisalign Treatment: Understanding the Restrictions

Written by:

Dr. Justin Soon

Published on:

Invisalign Treatment: Understanding the Restrictions

Are you considering Invisalign to straighten your teeth? Many people find invisible braces appealing. They are effective, convenient, and aesthetically pleasing.

Invisalign is a viable choice for achieving a beautiful smile without the hassle of conventional braces. However, it’s important to understand its restrictions during Invisalign treatment.

By having an idea of what to expect, you’ll have a smoother Invisalign journey. This way, you can maximise the benefits of Invisalign.

Read on to learn more about restrictions when wearing Invisalign aligners!

What Is Invisalign Treatment?

Invisalign treatment is a state-of-the-art teeth straightening technology. It can help straighten teeth without the need for traditional metal braces.

Invisalign uses a series of clear, custom-moulded aligners that fit your teeth snugly. The aligners gently shift teeth into their proper position. They are worn for two weeks at a time and replaced with the next set in the series.

Because every orthodontic case is different, each Invisalign aligner is designed based on your dentist’s prescribed digital treatment plan. Using this plan, computer simulations of anticipated tooth movements are generated.

There are different Invisalign treatments designed to address every patient’s needs. These are:

  • Invisalign Full:
    Invisalign Full is designed to address more extensive orthodontic problems. This often includes underbites, overbites, crooked teeth, and misalignment. Invisalign Full treatment usually lasts 12-24 months.

  • Invisalign Lite:
    Invisalign Lite is ideal for mild to moderate cases of misalignment. In contrast to Invisalign’s full system, which uses an unlimited number of trays, Invisalign Lite requires only 8-14 trays. It can be completed in as little as 6-9 months.

  • Invisalign Express:
    This is recommended for those seeking minor orthodontic treatment for mild crowding or spacing of teeth. Invisalign Express has three distinct product options to provide the right level of treatment. Invisalign Express 5, 10, and i7 offer 5, 10, and 7 sets of aligner trays, respectively, depending on how severe your case is. This has a short treatment time of 3-6 months.

  • Invisalign Teen:
    Invisalign Teen is designed to achieve straighter teeth for teens suffering from mild to moderate cases of misalignment and overcrowding. It has specific features incorporated to address the needs of teenage patients, and the treatment duration is usually 12-24 months.

  • Invisalign First: Invisalign First provides children 6-10 years old with a quick and comfortable way to address developing teeth alignment problems. Treatment duration can be 6-18 months, depending on the patient’s dental concern.

Is There an Age Restriction for Invisalign?

There are no age restrictions to using Invisalign. Young children, adults, and adolescents alike can benefit from this modern orthodontic treatment. Invisalign may take longer for adults compared to teenagers. But regardless of age, anyone can benefit from this revolutionary system.

What Are the Things I Should Not Do During Invisalign Treatment?

It is important to understand that while it allows for flexibility and convenience compared to traditional braces, there are restrictions during Invisalign treatment. Avoiding certain activities and habits can help you get the maximum benefits of this treatment. These restrictions include the following:

  • Avoid eating hard, sticky or chewy foods during your Invisalign treatment.
    Consuming sticky or hard foods may put excessive strain on teeth, and the food debris can be difficult to remove, resulting in cavities. They may also stick to your aligners, causing staining.

  • Refrain from smoking and drinking beverages with high sugar content.
    Sodas, sports drinks, and juices could lead to stained teeth, yellowing of the aligners, and tooth decay.

  • Avoid activities that could lead to chipped, cracked, or broken aligners.
    Avoid chewing on your nails or pencils. Wear a mouthguard when engaging in contact sports.

  • Avoid taking off your aligners far longer than necessary.
    Remember that Invisalign aligners should be worn for 20-22 hours a day.

  • Do not expose your aligners to hot temperatures like boiling water or direct sunlight.
    Heat can warp the aligners, making them ineffective in straightening your teeth.

To get ideal results, you should follow all dentist-recommended restrictions during Invisalign treatment and take proper care of your aligners.

What Foods Should I Not Eat During Invisalign Treatment?

If you’re going through Invisalign treatment, note that there are food restrictions. Fortunately, since Invisalign is removable, there will be fewer restrictions than traditional braces.

Food and drink items that should be avoided include:

  • Popcorn
  • Nuts
  • Seeds
  • Hard candies
  • Sticky food, including gum, caramel, and taffy
  • Ice
  • Chewy food like tough meat and steak
  • Crunchy food such as chips and pretzels
  • Hard raw fruits and vegetables such as carrots and apples (unless cut into small pieces)
  • Dark-coloured beverages such as coffee, soda, and tea

The foods mentioned above can cause your newly-shifted teeth to become sore. They can also stick to your teeth and transfer to your Invisalign aligners, causing them to stain and maybe even break.

If you’re looking for a snack, opt for soft foods, like:

  • Yogurt
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Hummus
  • Protein shakes
  • Applesauce
  • Smoothies

Be aware of what you’re eating so your aligners stay clean. Eating food that shouldn’t be eaten can reduce the effectiveness of your Invisalign treatment. Understanding these diet restrictions will help your treatment go smoother.

Aside From Following the Mentioned Restrictions, What Further Steps Can I Take for Successful Invisalign Treatment?

We all aim for successful Invisalign treatment. Here are some steps you can take to achieve this goal.

  1. Brush your teeth carefully and consistently with fluoride toothpaste.

  2. Use antiseptic mouthwash to help prevent plaque buildup.

  3. Come for routine check-ups so your dentist can monitor your treatment progress.

  4. Wear your aligners for 20-22 hours a day. This is essential to move your teeth throughout the course of the dental treatment.

  5. Clean your aligners regularly with Invisalign cleaning crystals. You can also use a soft-bristled toothbrush and non-abrasive toothpaste to remove plaque buildup.

  6. Follow your dentist’s instructions so you don’t cause undue harm to your teeth.

Is Invisalign Worth It Despite These Restrictions?

Invisalign is an innovative orthodontic treatment option that allows patients to realign their teeth without using metal braces. Despite Invisalign restrictions, the benefits of Invisalign are undeniable.

Invisalign eliminates the need for wires or brackets associated with traditional braces. In addition, many people want a more subtle and discreet approach to straightening, which Invisalign provides. Also, Invisalign braces allow you to brush, floss, and eat normally.

In conclusion, Invisalign might have a few restrictions, but they don’t outweigh its benefits. They make Invisalign treatment worth your time and money.

Final Thoughts

Invisalign treatment has been proven to be an efficient way to address mild to moderate dental misalignment. However, there are restrictions during the treatment, and it is important to follow them to achieve successful Invisalign treatment.

These restrictions help keep the aligners in optimal condition to achieve the ideal results. In addition, it is also important to visit your dentist regularly for proper monitoring. They will check if your treatment is progressing as planned.

At Karrinyup Dental Centre, our team of dentists has plenty of experience helping people achieve beautiful smiles with Invisalign. If you are interested in giving it a go, don’t wait any longer. Take the first step towards straight teeth by booking a consultation appointment through our website or calling us today. Our friendly dental professionals can assess your teeth and discuss how Invisalign can help you get the smile you’ve always wanted.

Frequently Asked Questions

Their teeth without metal braces. It offers many advantages, making it a desirable orthodontic choice, such as:

  • It is much safer than traditional metal braces since no wires or brackets can cause damage your mouth.

  • The aligners used in Invisalign are custom-made and moulded specifically for each patient’s teeth. This makes them more comfortable than traditional braces’ metal wires and brackets.

  • The aligners used in Invisalign treatment are removable, allowing you to eat normally and without worrying about food being stuck on the metal brackets and wires.

  • Because Invisalign is removable, you can easily brush and floss your teeth and maintain good oral hygiene.

  • You don’t need to wait two years to see results. Invisalign treatment can straighten your teeth faster than traditional braces.

With these benefits considered, it’s easy to see why Invisalign has become so popular with those wanting to straighten their teeth efficiently and comfortably.

The length of time that Invisalign needs to be worn can vary depending on the following:

  • How severe the orthodontic problem is
  • How consistent you are with wearing the aligners throughout the entire treatment process

The recommended time frame for optimal results is 12-18 months. However, if you are diligent about wearing your trays for 20-22 hours a day, you might be able to finish your treatment sooner. After Invisalign treatment, you must use a retainer to maintain your newly straightened teeth.

Replacing your aligner is one of the keys to effective Invisalign treatment. In most cases, it is recommended to replace your aligners every two weeks, but your dentist may adjust this frequency depending on the complexity of your case. In some cases, you may be expected to change your aligners as often as every week, while in other cases, your dentist may allow you to keep an aligner for up to four weeks. Following these recommendations will help your teeth move and stay on track toward the end goal of a beautiful set of straight teeth!

Keeping your aligners clean is important in maintaining their effectiveness. To keep your aligners in top condition, here are tips on how to clean Invisalign aligners.

  • Rinse your aligners with lukewarm water right after each use. This helps remove food particles and plaque that could accumulate during the day.

  • Brush aligners gently with a soft-bristled toothbrush and non-abrasive toothpaste. Do not scrub too hard, as this can damage the Invisalign.

  • Give the aligners a deep clean every other week. Soak them in Steraligner aligner cleaning solution to remove stubborn stains and plaque buildup.

  • Avoid using hot water, as this could cause the alignment trays to warp.

  • Always keep your aligners in their case when they’re not in use. This will help prevent them from being damaged or lost.

By following these tips, you’ll be able to maintain clean and healthy Invisalign aligners for a longer period of time.

Dr. Justin Soon


Dr. Justin Soon

Dr. Justin completed his Bachelor of Dental Surgery at the University of Western Australia. Dr Justin completed his surgical implant training under the mentorship of Dr. Glen Liddelow, Dr. Graham Carmichael, and Dr. Brent Allan at the Branemark Centre.

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