invisalign aligners pure smiles

Help – I Haven’t Been Wearing My Aligners, Now What?

Austin, TX – Invisalign treatment is growing in popularity due to its discrete nature and comfort. People are drawn to it because it is removable, which means patients don’t need to change their diets or oral care habits while in treatment. But this advantage is also a drawback. What happens if you skip wearing your aligners as often as you should?

Invisalign consists of a series of clear aligners that fit over the teeth to gently guide them to their ideal locations,” says Dr. Silvana Gonzalez. “The treatment is completely customized to your smile, and each aligner set is perfectly calibrated to achieve a certain movement before moving on to the next.”

At Pure Smiles Orthodontics, we will provide you with instructions on how to wear your aligners during treatment. Typically each aligner set is worn for around 22 hours a day for 10-12 days before switching to a new set. So what happens if you don’t do that?

Quite simply, the aligners won’t be doing their job. The longer you go without wearing your aligners, the more you are altering your treatment plan and lengthening the amount of time you’ll have to spend in treatment. And any work you’ve already put in may start to disappear as your teeth try to shift back to their original locations. 

Why does this happen? Your teeth are moved by the aligners placing pressure on them. This pressure relaxes the ligaments that hold the teeth in place, allowing them to move through the bone. But this can only happen with constant pressure. Forgetting to wear your aligners for an extended time can undo the hard work your mouth has already put in.

If your teeth begin to shift back to their original locations, your aligner trays will no longer fit as they should. Each set is calibrated to achieve a certain movement, and if that movement is lost, the tray will no longer fit as it should. If this happens, it’s important to speak with your Austin TX orthodontist, Dr. Silvana Gonzalez. She may direct you to revert to a previous aligner set to get your treatment back on track. 

Having to backtrack can extend your treatment time. Every extended period of time without having your aligners in may be adding additional time to your treatment. The more closely you follow your orthodontist’s directions for wearing your aligner trays, the faster your treatment will go by.

Your aligners should only be taken out to eat, drink, brush and floss. Getting into this habit early sets a solid foundation for your treatment. You’ll begin to create a routine that will help ensure your treatment stays on track.

“Invisalign requires a high degree of patient compliance to be successful,” says Dr. Gonzalez. “It can provide beautiful results, but only if patients follow their treatment plan. If you’re worried you may not be able to adhere to the correct wear, Invisalign may not be the right treatment for you.”

If you are interested in learning more about Invisalign clear aligner therapy, call Pure Smiles Orthodontics today at 512-215-2520.