Getting Aligners in your mouth can help correct mild to moderately crowded or incorrectly spaced teeth. It is recommended to take aligners out while eating and drinking. You’re supposed to wear your aligning trays for between 20 and 22 hours a day. You only have time to remove them for eating meals, and brushing and flossing your teeth. Eating with Aligners Since aligner trays are removable, you don’t have to remove foods from your diet. You can still enjoy your favorite breakfasts, lunches, and dinners. You will need to remove your aligning trays before eating and put them back in after you finish your meal, and have brushed and flossed your teeth. If you don’t brush or floss before putting them back in, you’ll end up coating your teeth and your aligners in food particles and bacteria, which could then increase your chance of developing tooth decay and cavities. It’s recommended to limit snacking between meals because eating with trays in your mouth is not recommended. They are not designed to withstand the pressures of chewing, and you could stain them and get food stuck in them. If you eat a lot of snacks during the day, you could reduce your wear schedule below the recommended minimum of 20 hours a day. Drinking with Aligners You can drink as much cool water as you want every day without having to remove your aligning trays. If you are drinking something other than water, it is recommended to remove the trays just as you would while eating. After you finish your drink, brush and floss your teeth before reinserting your aligners, or at least rinse your mouth with more water. You should never drink extremely cold or hot beverages while wearing them because extreme temperatures can damage the aligners. Removing your aligners multiple times a day to drink sodas, coffee, energy drinks, and juices, can reduce your daily wear below the 20 hours. Many people choose to drink water between meals and enjoy their favorite beverages while eating. Aligners seem like a lot of work, but you are free to eat or drink whatever you want. If you continue to have good oral hygiene, you should be fine. Feel free to call our orthodontist office if you have any questions about your aligners.