Common Invisalign Side Effects and How to Deal with Them

invisalign side effects

Invisalign has changed the face of orthodontics. More and more people, especially teens, turn to Invisalign clear aligners as their preferred teeth correction method instead of metal braces. Many expect the number of Invisalign users to increase in the coming years, too.

It’s easy to see why Invisalign has become increasingly popular. This technology is generally much easier to tolerate and maintain than traditional braces. With Invisalign, you simply place two clear trays over your teeth.

Still, there are some Invisalign side effects you should know about. These side effects often occur right after starting Invisalign and vanish with time. Read on to learn about the most common Invisalign side effects, so you know what to expect before beginning treatment.

Want to see if you’re a candidate for Invisalign? Connect with Westchase Smiles Institute, the best Invisalign experts in Tampa! Call us at (813) 920-9144 to book your appointment today.

Tooth Discomfort

Any orthodontia that shifts your teeth positions may cause discomfort, especially at the beginning of treatment. Though Invisalign generally creates less discomfort than braces, the aligners will likely feel tight at first. Your mouth may also feel heavy and full, leading to potential jaw soreness.

However, as Invisalign realigns your teeth, your mouth will gradually adjust to the fit. You can also take over-the-counter pain relievers like Advil or Tylenol to ease the initial aches and pains.

Swollen or Tender Gums

Though Invisalign does not rub against your gums, it still puts tension on your teeth and can produce gum swelling. Furthermore, your Invisalign treatment may include special buttons on the trays called “attachments.” These attachments help the aligners reposition the teeth, but they can worsen gum irritation.

You can use OTC pain relievers or ice packs to reduce gum swelling. Fortunately, like most other Invisalign side effects, gum irritation usually clears up after the first few weeks of using Invisalign.

Speech Difficulties

Speaking while using Invisalign can feel strange or awkward at first. The aligner trays may make your voice sound muffled or cause impaired speech, such as a lisp.

However, like most other Invisalign side effects, this symptom usually disappears after the first month of using the aligners. You can also overcome this symptom quickly by practicing speaking while wearing Invisalign. Alternatively, if you need to give an important speech or presentation, you can remove the aligners beforehand, though you should put them on again after finishing.

Bite Realignment

You may be wearing Invisalign to correct an underbite or an overbite. Therefore, your Invisalign might cause you to bite your inner cheeks by mistake. However, as the position of your teeth changes, your bite will become more natural.

Dry Mouth

Because Invisalign encases your teeth, saliva can no longer wash over them. The natural washing process helps keep your mouth moist, so wearing Invisalign may cause dry mouth.

Fortunately, drinking plenty of water throughout the day and eating a healthy diet mitigates this side effect. Also, make sure to give your teeth a good rinse with water whenever you remove your Invisalign.

Bad Breath

Food remnants may adhere around and inside your aligners. If left untreated, the debris can promote bad breath, or halitosis. Also, you’ll get foul breath if you fail to clean your trays regularly and practice oral hygiene—both common mistakes to avoid with Invisalign.

You can beat bad breath by regularly rinsing and cleaning your Invisalign trays, as instructed by your dentist. You should also make sure you’re brushing your teeth, flossing, and using mouthwash twice a day.

Excessive Wear Time

It’s best to wear Invisalign trays for about 20 hours each day. If you exceed that timeframe, your teeth might damage the trays. Furthermore, failure to remove the trays to brush your teeth and clean the aligners will degrade your Invisalign and your teeth.

Long-Term Tooth and Gum Damage

If you use Invisalign for more than one year, the aligners may chip your teeth or cause other long-term damage to them. Like braces, Invisalign can also contribute to gum recession and exposed tooth roots. However, going to the dentist as needed should prevent any damage since dentists check for these side effects. 


Bite realignment may cause jaw tension that spreads to the head, especially the temples. Hot compresses and pain relievers can ease these tension headaches.


In very rare cases, Invisalign may cause an allergic reaction. Specifically, Invisalign’s materials may cause irritated or swollen gums if you have a preexisting allergy. These symptoms are usually mild, but if they worsen, ask your dentist if you can choose a different type of teeth straightener.

Unnecessary Weight Loss

You may have heard of the infamous “Invisalign Diet.” It’s not truly a diet. However, the name arises from Invisalign users eating less to avoid cleaning their trays or performing maintenance every day.

We don’t recommend skipping meals or eating less when using Invisalign. Instead, try to eat nutritious meals that create less food debris in the mouth, thereby reducing the amount of required cleaning. For example, protein shakes and brothy soups can help you maintain a healthy weight while generating less mess.


Invisalign side effects can cause mental stress at times. For instance, because you must remove aligners every time you eat, you need to plan your mealtimes accordingly. This scheduling means you must always prepare to remove your Invisalign before eating, then rinse it out afterward.

Furthermore, having to wear Invisalign for each day may seem stressful. Nonetheless, if you form good habits when starting Invisalign, planning your days around it will become effortless over time.

Invisalign is just one way to get the smile you’ve always wanted. Learn how you can improve your smile overnight with help from the dental experts at Westchase Smiles Institute. Call us today at (813) 920-9144 to book your consultation.

If you prefer to speak to a team member please call (813) 920-9144

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