Preventing Dry Mouth When Using Invisalign

Posted on: 9 February 2015

Using Invisalign to straighten your teeth has many benefits. The clear aligners will be less noticeable than traditional braces, and you will be able to take them out whenever you need. However, you will also need to take extra care of your mouth when using them. This is because some people experience dry mouth when using Invisalign, which can cause problems such as bad breath and compromised dental health. Further, it can be uncomfortable to deal with. Below are some tips for preventing dry mouth when using Invisalign. Hopefully these tips will help make your Invisalign experience as positive as possible.

Keep Yourself Hydrated

Even if you think you drink enough water, you may still not get as much as you need. If you experience dry mouth when using Invisalign, this may be a sign that you are dehydrated. Other signs of dehydration include fatigue, headaches, and dry skin, so be sure to watch for these. To make sure you have enough water in your system, try the following tips:

  • Always keep water nearby. Rather than waiting until you're in your kitchen to drink some water, you should take water with you wherever you go. Pour yourself a glass to keep by your bed at night, and keep a water bottle in your bag when you go out.
  • Avoid alcoholic drinks: Alcohol can be dehydrating because it leads to increased urination. Plus, you shouldn't drink it when you're wearing your aligners, since this may contribute to acid erosion. Try removing alcoholic drinks from your home so you won't be tempted. Another idea is to ask a friend to help you cut down on your drinking.
  • Eat foods that help to hydrate you: One good option is the cucumber, which is 96% water. Watermelon, strawberries, and celery are also extremely hydrating.

Stimulate Saliva Production

In addition to staying hydrated, there are other ways to increase the production of saliva in your mouth. Below are some ideas to try:

  • Use sugarless gum: Chewing sugarless gum is one great way to help increase the saliva you produce. So whenever you take your aligners out, you may want to try it. Just make sure to set a timer to ensure you don't leave your aligners out too long. Also, try to choose a gum that contains xylitol. Xylitol has been shown to help prevent tooth decay.
  • Eat foods that encourage saliva production: Most foods which require a lot of chewing are bound to increase your saliva production. So try eating fruits such as apples and pears to see if that helps. Sour foods, such as lemons or grapefruit, can also help to stimulate saliva flow. Of course, make sure to take your aligners out before eating these foods.
  • Suck on ice chips: The sucking motion should help to increase saliva in your mouth. You may also want to try sucking on sugar-free treats such as popsicles or hard candies.

Other Suggestions

In addition to the above tips, there are other ways to fight the symptoms of dry mouth as well. Below are some of the methods your dentist may suggest:

  • Rinse your aligners with warm water before putting them in: Not only will this help to keep them clean, but should also help relieve any dry mouth symptoms you have by adding water to your mouth directly.
  • Use a humidifier at night: This will add moisture to the air, which should in turn help alleviate your dry mouth symptoms. 

Using these tips, you can help combat any dry mouth you experience when using Invisalign. This will help you to continue your Invisalign treatment, leading to the teeth you want.