Invisalign and Smoking Is a Bad Combination
Invisalign® is a discreet orthodontic treatment that uses comfortable, clear aligner trays to create beautifully straight teeth.
Many of Dr. William B. Stofer's patients find Invisalign fits easily into their lives without much change to their daily routines, but those who smoke may feel otherwise. Unfortunately, Invisalign and smoking is a bad combination. Our Warsaw, IN, patients are strongly advised not to smoke during Invisalign treatment. Today, we'll take a closer look at why smoking is bad for Invisalign and how it can interfere with results.
Why Shouldn't I Smoke during Invisalign Treatment?
The goal of Invisalign treatment is to improve the alignment of the teeth and enhance the smile. Smoking during Invisalign treatment can interfere with results and make it harder to reach the end goal of treatment. If that's not reason enough to stop smoking while undergoing Invisalign, you may want to consider these other reasons.
Smoking Stains Clear Aligners
One of the biggest appeals of Invisalign is that the aligner trays are clear, providing discreet, nearly invisible orthodontic treatment. Smoking can stain Invisalign trays, making aligner trays noticeable, negating the discreetness of Invisalign.
Some smokers may try to avoid staining their aligners by removing them while smoking. Unfortunately, trays can still become discolored from remnants of tar and nicotine from cigarettes that stay behind on the teeth and in the mouth.
Tobacco and Nicotine Can Get Trapped Under Aligners
Even if aligners are removed while smoking, placing them back after smoking a cigarette can result in tobacco, nicotine, and tar getting trapped under the aligners.
When these substances stay in close contact with the teeth and gums, it increases the risk of oral health problems, including gum disease, tooth decay, dental discoloration, and enamel erosion.
Frequent Removal of Aligners Can Interfere with Treatment
A perk of Invisalign aligners is that they can be removed when eating and cleaning the teeth. However, aligners shouldn't be removed too frequently and need to be worn for at least 22 hours a day.
Removing aligners to smoke may lead to aligners being worn for less than 22 hours a day. This may interfere with treatment, causing it to take longer for final results to be achieved.
How Long Should I Give Up Smoking?
We recommend that our Warsaw patients who smoke give up smoking for the duration of Invisalign treatment.
The length of time needed to complete treatment depends on each patient's unique needs. Some patients achieve their desired results in about six months while others will need to wear aligners for over a year. Accordingly, smokers should be prepared to give up smoking for an extended period of time.
It's often helpful to quit smoking several weeks or months before treatment in order to make it easier to avoid smoking during treatment. If you need help quitting, you may want to speak with your general physician about medications or other resources to help you stop smoking.
Schedule a Consultation
If you live in Warsaw and would like more information about Invisalign and smoking, please call (574) 269-1199 to schedule a consultation with our team at Dental Solutions.