It is natural to have concerns about potential discomfort associated with Invisalign attachment, like during attachment, when eating, or during removal.
However, the majority of patients report minimal discomfort or pain during the attachment bonding process. The attachments are carefully placed to ensure a comfortable fit and optimal functionality of the aligners.
Once you resume your daily activities, Invisalign attachments may also cause discomfort while eating because the rough edges of the attachments can rub against your cheeks or gums.
Chewing food slowly on the opposite side of the jaw and using orthodontic wax to cover the affected attachment can help alleviate this issue. Typically, these problems improve as you adapt to the attachments over time.
During the removal of Invisalign attachments, you should not feel any pain or discomfort. The dentist uses instruments to remove the attachments without causing harm. However, it is common to feel a sense of adjustment after getting them removed since you’ve been wearing them for a long time.
Aligners Putting Pressure through Attachments
While you may experience some initial adjustment discomfort when wearing new aligners, the presence of attachments should not significantly contribute to any pain or discomfort.
Generally, the buttons themselves do not cause pain. However, when elastics are attached to the buttons to exert additional pressure on the teeth, it can result in discomfort for one to two days after getting the buttons and elastics with Invisalign.
It is important to communicate any concerns or excessive pain to your orthodontist or dentist who can provide guidance and ensure your Invisalign treatment is progressing as expected.
Here are some possible reasons for the discomfort:
Getting a New Set of Aligners
Each time a new set of Invisalign trays is introduced, there is an increase in pressure on the teeth and attachments. Consequently, the teeth and gums may feel sore during the initial days. This discomfort is temporary and subsides as the teeth adjust to the new aligners. It is important to note that this soreness is a normal part of the treatment process.
Tightly Fitted Aligners
Occasionally, aligners may feel excessively tight due to manufacturing issues, although this is rare. Additionally, if aligners are not consistently worn or are left out for extended periods, the teeth may revert to their previous position. When reinserting the aligners, they may not fit properly, leading to increased discomfort.
Irregular Wear of Aligners
Prolonged intervals without wearing the aligners can cause pain upon reinsertion. During this period, the teeth may shift, and when aligners are worn again, they may not fit correctly, resulting in heightened discomfort. Consistency in wearing the aligners as instructed by the dentist is crucial to prevent such pain.
Attachments Falling Off or Poorly Fitted
Maintaining the integrity of attachments is essential throughout the Invisalign treatment. If an attachment becomes dislodged, falls off, or gets damaged, inserting the aligners can be uncomfortable, as the intended pressure and effectiveness may be compromised. It is important to seek dental assistance if attachments require repair or replacement.
Injury to Attachments
Since attachments alter the tooth surface, they can cause additional discomfort if the teeth sustain any trauma during treatment. Practicing caution and avoiding activities that may harm the attachments can minimize the risk of injuries and subsequent pain.
Eating Hard and Crunchy Foods
Invisalign attachments are more susceptible to discomfort when exposed to the pressure exerted by hard or crunchy foods. Individuals experiencing pain should avoid such foods and opt for softer alternatives until the discomfort subsides.
Incorrect Tooth Brushing Techniques
When brushing teeth with Invisalign attachments, it is crucial to employ proper techniques. Incorrect brushing may damage attachments, leading to discomfort. Dentists can provide guidance on suitable brushing methods to protect attachments and maintain oral hygiene.
Tips to manage painful attachments
To relieve pain from Invisalign attachments, here are some methods you can try:
- Follow your dentist’s instructions: Always follow the instructions provided by your dentist to ensure proper use of the aligners and prevent pain.
- Use Invisalign Chewies: Chewies help improve the fit of the aligners and relieve tension. Use them when you get a new set of aligners or when you feel pain or discomfort.
- Apply orthodontic wax: If attachments irritate your cheeks or gums, apply orthodontic wax to protect your mouth from sores and reduce discomfort.
- Take over-the-counter pain relievers: If the pain is unbearable, you can take over-the-counter pain relievers as directed. However, in most cases, the pain resolves on its own.
- Apply local pain relievers: Use products like Orajel ointment on the painful areas to temporarily relieve pain from attachments.
- Apply cold compression: Use a cold towel or ice pack over your mouth to reduce pain temporarily.
- Follow proper insertion and removal techniques: Learn the correct method of inserting and removing the aligners to minimize discomfort.
- Use aligner removal tools: Tools designed for removing aligners can help you remove them easily without pain or discomfort.
- Avoid hard and crunchy foods: Choose soft and easy-to-chew foods to prevent additional pressure on the attachments or buttons, which can cause pain.
- Switch aligners at night: When you receive a new set of aligners, switch to them the night before going to bed. This allows your teeth to adjust and reduces discomfort during the day.
- Drink a cold or hot beverage: If the attachments or buttons are causing significant pain, temporarily remove the aligners and drink a cold or hot beverage like coffee or tea to soothe the discomfort.
- Follow proper brushing and flossing techniques: Learn the correct technique for brushing and flossing your teeth while wearing Invisalign attachments or buttons to avoid causing additional discomfort.
- Protect the attachments or buttons: Take care to prevent damage or detachment of the attachments or buttons, as this can contribute to mouth pain.
Remember, it is normal to experience some discomfort when wearing Invisalign attachments or buttons, especially during the initial days with a new set of aligners. The duration of discomfort varies.
Generally, you may experience mild pain and discomfort for the first few days after getting new aligners and attachments as the pressure is applied to your teeth. As your teeth start to adjust and move, the pain typically subsides on its own.
However, if the pain is severe or persists for more than a few days or becomes severe, consult your dentist for further evaluation and guidance.