When you start looking online for things that can help you with your invisible aligner treatment, you may come across chewies.
And as popular as these quite clever additions to an aligner are, there is surprisingly little online about them, what they are and how they work.
In this article, you will be provided with a brief introductory guide to chewies, to help you explore whether or not they are required for your use of Invisalign Clapham.
What are chewies?
Physically, chewies look like a mix of an earplug and a drinking straw.
They are made from a soft plastic called styrene copolymer, width-wise, they are similar to a standard pencil or a pen.
They are designed to help with the fitting of an aligner; when it comes to invisible aligners, you will usually have a set of 14 to wear in a succession and when you change between them, the newer aligner is unlikely to fit snugly. With the use of a chewie, you can ensure that the aligners are fitted right next to the teeth, thus enabling them to work faster and quicker.
How do you use them?
You simply place the chewies in your mouth and bite down on them.
They should be used twice a day (if you need to use them more, speak to your dentist) until the ‘chewy’ element of them disappears. At this time, switch to a newer one.
Chew them for between 5-10 minutes per day; as you wear invisible aligners to bed, it may be best to attempt to use them before you put your nighttime aligner in.
Do they speed up treatment?
As mentioned earlier, chewies help your aligners to fit your teeth correctly. And while that doesn’t ‘speed up’ treatment, it certainly helps it to stay on track. They also help the aligners to be more effective at straightening your teeth.
Are there any alternatives?
While chewies are effective at fitting the aligners to your teeth, some people find their taste a bit unpleasant.
And so, if you are looking for an edible option, there is a brand of chewie based mints called Movemints which can be used as a suitable (and tasty) alternative.
Is there anything else I should know about chewies?
As they are reusable, you may need to wash them every day.
But as they don’t need to stay invisible like your aligners, and as plastic can taste a bit horrible for some people, you can wash them or soak them in mouthwash to keep them fresh.
Remember, that they do become worn out, and you should look for signs such as lack of elasticity before switching to a new chewie. When you chew these tools for 5-10 minutes per day, you may also experience discomfort in your jaw, which is to be expected. But if it becomes unbearable, talk to your dental provider.
When it comes to invisible aligners, it can be tempting to assume that a lack of tracking (or fitting) is normal, especially at the start of a new aligner but if it is persistent, then you need to talk to your dentist.
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