Image of Invisalign clear aligner trays being stored

Can Clear Aligners Just Be Worn At Night?

September 7, 2023 Published by

Very few people have perfectly aligned teeth, so for most of us, clear aligners can straighten imperfections and provide the smile we’ve always wanted! Unlike traditional braces, clear aligners are removable. Is it okay to take them out during the day and just wear them at night?

Clear Aligners Need to Be Worn 21-22 Hours a Day

Even if you have very mild alignment issues, you need to wear your aligners all the time. If you only wear them at night, your teeth will shift back to their crooked positions and treatment won’t be effective. Most people need to wear their aligners 21-22 hours a day, removing only at mealtimes and during oral hygiene. Wearing your aligners for less time will prolong your treatment.

Aligners Are Removed for Eating, Drinking Anything Other Than Water, and Cleaning Your Teeth

Clear aligners should be removed before eating. If you try to eat with your aligners in, you risk staining the aligners or even cracking them. It’s okay to drink water, but you should take out your aligners to drink coffee, tea, or any other beverage. You should also remove your aligners to clean your teeth! Being able to easily clean your teeth is one of the main advantages of Invisalign over braces.

Aligners Should Be Soaked About Once a Day

Aligners are cleaned with a soft-bristled toothbrush and mild dish soap twice a day, but if you want them to look their best, you should also soak your trays about once a day. Invisalign sells special cleaning crystals, but you can use a denture cleaner or a little bit of vinegar distilled with water. To thoroughly sanitize your trays, soak them for at least 15-20 minutes. Remember to rinse the trays before putting them back in your mouth!

Invisalign at Oakboro Family Dentistry in Oakboro, NC

For the best results and fastest treatment, you should wear your clear aligners at night and during the day! Luckily, the trays are practically invisible, so many people may not even notice them. On average, Invisalign takes 12-18 months. If you have questions or want to schedule a consultation with one of our dentists, please contact us today!

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