Invisalign patients sometimes ask Bellaire Dental, “Can I drink alcohol with braces or Invisalign?”? It will depend on whether you have traditional braces or clear aligners, as the answer varies depending on the type of braces you have. The traditional braces that are bonded to your teeth are usually made of stainless steel or ceramics, materials that are highly resistant to stains, so you can eat as you please as long as you don’t drink anything that’s stain-causing. Before you can drink anything but relaxed or room temperature water (we’ll explain why shortly) when wearing Invisalign, you’ll have to remove your aligners first (we’ll explain why shortly).
THE ESSENTIALS OF DRINKING AND TEETH
It is natural to have bacteria in our mouths, some beneficial and some harmful. When you drink water or eat sugary or starchy foods, harmful bacteria feed off those substances. As a result, acids are released into your mouth and eat away at your tooth enamel, causing a sticky substance known as a plaque to form on your teeth. In the long run, this can result in cavities forming on the teeth.
Certain drinks are better suited to be consumed in moderation, whether you are in orthodontic treatment or not, such as soda, sweetened iced tea, some cocktails, juice, and sports drinks. It is also worth noting that other drinks, such as coffee, tea, and red wine, can stain teeth, despite not having as much sugar as standard drinks like soda. You should also enjoy these in moderation if you wish to maintain the appearance of your smile.
Acidic beverages are some of the worst drinks you can consume if you want to keep your teeth healthy. It has been established that acidic drinks, such as orange juice, lemonade, and white wine, can weaken the teeth’ enamel, making them more susceptible to cavities and staining. A mixed drink, such as one made up of alcohol and fruit juice, has a one-two punch of acidity and sugar, which can adversely affect your body.
Drinking the occasional alcoholic drink is fine as long as you don’t drink them frequently, especially if you aren’t keeping up with your oral hygiene routine because this can harm the way your smile looks.
DRINKING WITH BRACES: WHAT SHOULD I CONSIDER?
Does it seem possible that you can drink coffee while wearing braces? Does it make any difference whether you drink soda with braces or not? How does alcohol affect the body? It is crucial to remember that when you have clear braces or metal braces, there are no restrictions on what you can drink. The brackets and wires will not be damaged when you drink while wearing braces.
Plaque and bacteria are more likely to collect in nooks and crannies around braces, which makes them more susceptible to plaque buildup. Soda, mixed alcoholic beverages, sports drinks, and other sugary drinks should be limited in our Houston office by patients wearing braces.
If you get cavities while you’re in braces, your treatment might take longer than it should. Getting cavities at any stage in your life is not fun, but getting cavities while in braces could extend your treatment time. In addition, healthy oral environments allow teeth to move more efficiently.
In addition to sugary drinks, you’ll want to be careful when drinking coffee with braces (the same goes for tea, red wine, cranberry juice, and anything else dark-colored). Staining your teeth may result from drinking these types of beverages. It is also possible to have a two-toned smile when you have braces because brackets cover parts of your teeth, depending on how frequently you drink sodas and how long you have had them on.
Is it safe to drink with Invisalign or braces?
With Invisalign, you can have drinkable water whenever you want, just like with braces, but only if you wear your aligners when no one else is wearing them. Drinking anything other than pure water with your aligners is extremely important, so taking them out is recommended. This is due to the following reasons:
- Clear plastic is used to make the aligners that make up the Invisalign system. Invisalign’s plastic can be warped if you drink coffee or consume any other hot beverage. Invisalign is most effective when it is fitted correctly. The orthodontist can program the aligners to move your teeth according to their orthodontics programming. Still, if the plastic warps or the fit isn’t suitable, your teeth will not get the force they need to accomplish the movements. If this happens to you, you may have to wear that tray again, or you may end up having to compromise your results.
- Consuming sugary or acidic drinks while wearing Invisalign aligners can lead to cavities or tooth enamel erosion if your aligners are immediately put back in after you have consumed the drink or after drinking and putting your aligners back in without rinsing your mouth. The aligners fit snugly against your teeth, trapping the sugar or acid against them so they stick to them for an extended period, potentially damaging your teeth more than they would if you were not wearing them. In contrast to normal saliva, it will not be washed away by your body as it would typically be. Having a glass of soda or drinking a glass of alcohol while wearing Invisalign is acceptable, provided that you have removed your aligners and rinsed them out afterward.
- When you drink things that contain things like coffee, red wine, or tea while wearing Invisalign aligners in your mouth, the plastic of the aligners will stain. Because your aligners will be visible during treatment, you will not be able to achieve your goal of virtually invisible treatment.
IS INVISALIGN OR BRACES safe to drink?
- It is essential to follow these tips when drinking with Invisalign or braces so you do not get cavities, staining, or other problems:
- Ensure you take your Invisalign aligners out of their case before you drink anything to avoid damaging them.
- If you consume a drink over several hours, do not succumb to the temptation to sip slowly. Although it’s usually a good idea not to drink too quickly if you’re going to be drinking a drink that is alcoholic, at least when it comes to sodas or sports drinks, you don’t want to drink them all at once. In other words, without remineralization, your teeth will not be able to spring into action immediately, and the acids will have more time to damage your teeth.
- Ensure that you drink enough water. Water is essential to wash away some of the sugar, acid, and plaque accumulated in your mouth. Additionally, it also has the property of stimulating saliva, which is essential for neutralizing plaque acids and protecting teeth from decay.
- It might be a good idea to swish some water in your mouth before you put your aligners back in, then spit it out once you’ve had a drink after taking them out. If you are out for a night on the town enjoying adult beverages, don’t forget to rinse your mouth out every once in a while, regardless if you have braces or Invisalign.
- Don’t neglect your oral hygiene routine, especially if you have a busy schedule. In the morning, after meals or snack times, and before bed, you should brush your teeth with fluoride toothpaste to remove plaque and other decay. You should also floss once a day to keep your teeth healthy.
- Don’t forget to keep everything in moderation at all times. Moderation is the key to a healthy smile, such as having a glass of wine or a cup of coffee in moderation.
We hope this information has made you a pro regarding beverages and your smile. If you are interested in Invisalign or braces in Bellaire, TX, please do not hesitate to schedule a complimentary consultation at David Fisher cosmetic and general dentistry.