Tips To Combat Dry Mouth with Invisalign

Posted by Dr. John Paul Gallardo, DDS, PA
Close-up of a person inserting a clear Invisalign aligner to address dry mouth issues.
Invisalign may cause dry mouth, yet manageable with specialist tips.

Some people who use Invisalign braces experience dry mouth, but there are effective ways to handle this issue. Knowing why Invisalign might cause dry mouth helps in finding specific ways to reduce it and keep your mouth healthy.

Dr. John Paul Gallardo, a dental health specialist, provides useful tips for Invisalign users. He shares straightforward strategies to help retain moisture in the mouth, leading to a more comfortable experience while using Invisalign.

Battling Dry Mouth While Wearing Invisalign

  1. Staying hydrated by drinking plenty of water can help alleviate dry mouth symptoms when using Invisalign aligners.
  2. Over-the-counter saliva substitutes or mouthwashes designed for dry mouth can provide relief for Invisalign users.
  3. Good oral hygiene, including regular brushing and cleaning your Invisalign trays, is essential in preventing dry mouth.
  4. Cleaning properly Invisalign aligners maintain their shape and effectiveness.
  5. Consulting a dentist or orthodontist can offer personalized advice and solutions for managing dry mouth while undergoing Invisalign treatment.

Understanding Invisalign and Dry Mouth

Invisalign’s Effect on Saliva Production

While Invisalign aligners help straighten teeth, they may also contribute to dry mouth symptoms. Some users report that wearing these aligners causes dry mouth due to breathing and changes in saliva production. Since aligners cover the teeth completely, they can alter the environment in the mouth of patients, potentially leading to insufficient saliva.

Adequate saliva production is crucial, as it helps neutralize acids and protects against tooth decay. Lack of saliva production is an imbalance that can lead to discomfort and elevate oral health risks. Recognizing the possibility of Invisalign-related dry mouth is important for symptom management and good dental hygiene.

1. Keep Yourself Hydrated Consistently

Staying hydrated is important when wearing Invisalign as it helps maintain a comfortable mouth, ensuring a successful treatment. Here are some tips:

  • Begin your day with a glass of water to refresh.
  • Always have a water bottle handy—it acts as a natural time-release water delivery system.
  • Choose cold water for a soothing effect and to keep your mouth wet.

Drinking plenty of water benefits both your oral health and the Invisalign experience. A well-hydrated mouth reduces irritation and supports the health of your salivary glands, which play a crucial role in oral health by aiding in digestion and keeping the mouth moist. Remember, a mouth hydrated with lots of water is key to comfort.

2. Addressing Dry Mouth with Diet

Invisalign users experiencing dry mouths may find relief by adding certain foods to their diet. These not only add moisture but serve as a saliva substitute by stimulating saliva production:

  • Citrus fruits: The tangy taste promotes saliva flow.
  • Crunchy fruits and veggies: Chewing on apples, carrots, or celery helps produce saliva.
  • Moisture-rich foods: Cucumbers and melons can keep the mouth hydrated.
  • Salty foods: Small amounts may induce saliva; moderation is key.

Incorporating these saliva-boosting foods and morsels of food into your meals can aid oral health by keeping your mouth moist and clean.

3. Avoid Dehydrating Beverages and Habits

To manage dry mouth effectively during Invisalign treatment, consider reducing the intake of certain beverages and products:

  • Alcoholic beverages: These can decrease saliva production, which can make the mouth drier.
  • Caffeinated beverages: Frequent consumption of caffeine drinks may dehydrate the body and the mouth.
  • Tobacco products: Smoking or using tobacco can aggravate mouth dryness by diminishing saliva flow.
  • Dehydrating beverages: Drinks with diuretic effects should be limited.

Modifying these habits, including the reduction of sugary drinks, can help alleviate dry mouth from smoking and other factors that contribute to dehydration.

4. Use Over-the-Counter Saliva Substitutes

There could be side effects of invisalign like experiencing dry mouth that can be uncomfortable, but relief is available through over-the-counter mouth products. Specifically, saliva substitutes can be beneficial. Opt for:

  • Specialized oral mouthwash to address dryness.
  • Mouth sprays
  • Dry mouth lozenges

Choose products that agree with your aligners, ensuring they do not interfere with the Invisalign treatment.

5. Maintain Good Oral Hygiene Habits

A dry mouth can encourage bacteria growth leading to mouth sores. It’s important to ensure a mouth-healthy state when treating with Invisalign. Clean aligners with toothpaste every day to lessen bacteria and prevent buildup. Choose a non-abrasive toothpaste to keep your trays clear of scratches that harbor bacteria.

Incorporate antimicrobial mouth rinses into your dental routine to manage bacteria and freshen up dry mouths. Staying hydrated helps rinse away residual food and maintains a healthy mouth.

  • Use a soft toothbrush and fluoridated toothpaste for daily cleaning of your aligners.
  • Use antimicrobial mouth rinses suited for dry mouths.
  • Drink water regularly to diminish dryness and help clean your aligners.
Woman smiling, ready to brush teeth, maintaining oral hygiene with Invisalign.
Proper oral hygiene reduces bacteria growth with Invisalign.

6. Schedule Regular Check-Ups with Your Dentist

Visiting your dentist regularly is key during orthodontic treatment. These appointments are necessary for managing issues such as dry mouth issue and ensuring the effectiveness of treatments like Invisalign.

By keeping up with these check-ups, your orthodontist can monitor your teeth and oral health, address any concerns like dry mouth during treatment, and adjust your care plan as needed.

Skipping visits might lead to missed signs that could impact the health of your mouth and the success of your orthodontic treatment, so it’s important to attend them for the best outcome.

7. Breath Through Your Nose

Mouth breathing can result in dry mouths, an issue for individuals using Invisalign. To encourage nose breathing and manage this, consider these strategies:

  • Close your mouth intentionally during idle moments.
  • Engage in breathing exercises that favor nasal breaths, like diaphragmatic exercises.
  • Ensure nasal passages are unobstructed before bedtime to avoid mouth breathing during sleep.

Adopting these methods may help habitual nose breathing and decrease dry mouth for people with Invisalign.

8. Take Breaks from Wearing Invisalign as Recommended

For effective Invisalign treatment, wearing your aligners the right amount each day is vital. Yet, taking breaks, as suggested, is also important for your oral health. Removing your aligners occasionally helps prevent dry mouths, known to increase with constant use.

  • Remove aligner trays during meals and when drinking, providing natural intervals for your mouth.
  • Practice good oral hygiene each time your aligners are out to protect against dry mouths and keep mouth tissues healthy.
  • Air out aligner trays when not in use to prevent bacteria buildup and maintain oral health.

These steps ensure a balance between consistent aligner wear and maintaining the health of your mouth.

9. Keep your Aligners Clean

Maintaining the cleanliness of your Invisalign aligners is crucial for both oral health and the effectiveness of the treatment. It’s important to avoid hot water for cleaning, as it can warp the aligners, altering their fit and effectiveness. Instead, use lukewarm water, which is safe and effective for cleaning without causing any damage. Regular cleaning not only ensures the aligners remain clear and invisible but also helps prevent the buildup of bacteria, contributing to a healthier oral environment.

Consult with a Dental Specialist

If you’re dealing with dry mouth from wearing Invisalign, it’s important to seek professional advice. Dr. John Paul Gallardo, a specialist in periodontics and implant dentistry, can provide you with personalized care and treatment options. At his modern facility equipped with the latest technology, you can get optimal results in a comfortable setting.

To address your dry mouth concerns effectively and to learn more about maintaining oral health with Invisalign, schedule a consultation with Dr. Gallardo. His expertise and dedicated approach to periodontics ensure you receive the best possible care for your specific needs.