Orthodontic treatment does not stop with the procedure itself. As you must have heard from your orthodontist, success relies on maintenance and consistent practices. Sadly, many people are not successful at maintaining their dental routine when they’re constantly traveling around.
Traveling is both fun and hard work. Immersing yourself in different cultures and locations can make the day go by so quickly that you’ll forget about caring for your aligner. Well, we know a way, and we will show you how below.
What is Invisalign?
Invisalign is the brand name of a type of clear aligner made from a flexible thermoplastic material used in orthodontic treatment. The aligner covers the teeth and is less noticeable if you compare it to braces. Invisalign is used to fix crowding and spacing issues, bite issues, and gap teeth.
For Invisalign to work, dentists recommend you wear them for 20 – 22 hours daily. What happens to the remaining 2 – 4 hours? The only time you are supposed to remove your aligner is when you eat or drink, brush or floss, or clean your aligner. But will this be possible when you’re traveling and away from home?
If you are an Invisalign wearer that wants to embark on a journey, you must adhere to the following tips or risk complications.
Tell your dentist you’re traveling
The first, and maybe the most important tip is to never travel without telling your dentist, no matter the duration of the trip. This is where many Invisalign wearers miss the point. True, you don’t have to come in for an appointment when it is not due or necessary. However, it is vital to check in and let your dentist know your traveling plans. In some cases, a simple phone call can suffice.
When you visit your dentist or orthodontist before traveling, they can monitor your progress and share advice that can help you stick to your treatment plan while away. They can also adjust upcoming appointments if there is a need to. Therefore, don’t ever travel without a pre-travel appointment with your dentist.
Pack all essentials
After talking to your dentist, the next thing is to pack for the trip. Now, we understand that you have a lot of things to pack. However, traveling with Invisalign requires you to prioritize items that will help you keep your teeth and aligners clean and maintain your dental routine. The popular ones you should pack include:
If you’re going to be away for a few days, it is better to bring along an extra aligner since you’ll need to change it during this period. Even if you just started a new set, keep a backup in case you end up staying longer than anticipated or something happens to the one you’re wearing.
This cleaner will help you clean your Invisalign trays. All you need to do is soak and scrub them with an extra brush you are not using to remove food particles.
Aligner tray case
There is always the danger of misplacing your aligner trays when you take them out. Instead of keeping them on surfaces where it is possible to forget them, use an aligner tray case for portable storage. Although some people have argued against the need for a tray case when you have a bag, bags get delayed and lost every time. Therefore, a case is desired for its portability.
Aligner chewies are used to eliminate the space between the teeth and the aligner. It is also an efficient method of getting the aligner back into place. Therefore, include it in your travel pack.
Create a cleaning routine and stick to it
At this point, we will assume you already got to your destination. As fascinating as the thoughts of traveling appear, it comes with so much ease that we are tempted to completely let go of our responsibilities. One of the ways to ensure consistent dental hygiene practices is to create a cleaning routine. For example, if you need to keep brushing and flossing in the morning and night, do it. Also, try to keep your aligner in for up to 22 hours daily and set a timer while you drink or eat to ensure you don’t fall behind. In a nutshell, follow the rules of Invisalign treatment you follow at home.
If the thought of creating a routine appears overwhelming, discuss options with your dentist or orthodontist during the pre-travel appointment. This further stresses the point of why you should consult your dentist before traveling.
Brush and floss
Don’t embark on a trip without your toothbrush and dental floss. Even though it sounds impractical, there will be times when you’ll need to brush after every meal. Therefore, pack a travel toothbrush, mouthwash, and toothpaste and extend the same courtesy to your dental floss or floss picks. It is crucial to include mouthwash since you don’t know if there will be clean drinking water to brush and rinse at your destination.
Keep bottled water close
Tap water is not the best source of drinking water. Put differently, you may or may not be able to safely drink and use tap water to brush your teeth. In this case, keep bottled water with you all the time. In a situation where you are unable to brush your teeth after a meal, you can remove your trays, swish water in your mouth to get rid of food particles, and reinsert your trays.
Has it been a while since you checked your Invisalign treatment? If so, schedule the next one before your trip. At Sbenati Dentistry, we provide the smoothest and most rewarding treatment experience. We operate one of the largest dental clinics in London, Ontario, and our team members will be happy to answer any questions about traveling with Invisalign.