Happy summer! This is a season of warm days and relaxing weekends. Many of our favorite summer pastimes are associated with food, such as outdoor barbeque parties, ice cream runs, and drinks by the pool. While you can still enjoy most of these seasonal specialties during your Invisalign treatment, it is important to continue to take care of your teeth and clear aligners throughout the summer. In order to help you do that, we have put together this guide to keeping your summertime treats Invisalign friendly!

General Tips

Patients with standard metal braces need to be a little more careful about the foods they eat, as summer classics like corn on the cob and ribs can be difficult to bite into and can cause damage to wires and brackets. If you have chosen Invisalign as your orthodontic treatment option, you’ve got a little more flexibility. Since you need to remove your aligners when you eat or drink anything besides still water, you don’t need to worry about tough, chewy foods damaging your orthodontic equipment. However, you still need to take some precautions to keep your teeth and aligners clean and effective.

It is important to remember that in order to be effective, your Invisalign clear aligners must be worn for at least 22 hours per day. That means you’ve only got about two hours to eat and perform your oral hygiene routine throughout the day. We advise our patients to choose fewer, larger meals throughout the day instead of snacking to ensure that the aligners spend as much time in as possible. Before you put your aligners back in, make sure that you properly brush and floss your teeth and rinse your aligners. This goes for any and all summer treats!

BBQ Classics

Everyone loves a backyard barbeque! Luckily you can remove your Invisalign trays to eat all the delicious BBQ your heart desires! While you don’t have to worry about damaging your brackets, it is vital to remember to bring your oral hygiene kit with you, and thoroughly clean your teeth before putting your aligners back in. Foods like corn on the cob and tough meats can get stuck between your teeth and cause damage, so be sure to floss right after eating. BBQ sauce and other highly pigmented foods can also stain your aligners if they are left behind on your teeth.

Frozen Treats

Hot summer days are the perfect time to enjoy treats like ice cream and popsicles, and they are delicious and refreshing! However, remember that you will need to be weary of the sugar and pigments or dyes in these treats, as many of them contain chemicals that can cause cavities and damage to your clear aligners. The same is true of refreshing sugary drinks like sodas, mocktails, and milkshakes. Enjoy these in moderation, and with a straw whenever possible! Remember, you’ll need to remove your Invisalign aligners before enjoying these drinks, and brush your teeth before putting them back in!

We hope these tips help you enjoy an awesome, Invisalign-friendly summer! If you’re ready to start your Invisalign journey, schedule a consultation with us today!