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Managing Invisalign Cheek Irritation: Tips for Comfortable Treatment


Clear aligners from Invisalign have completely transformed how smiles are straightened, offering a discreet solution. Some wearers experience cheek irritation when adjusting to Invisalign. The trays may cause discomfort and sores when they rub against your inner cheeks. No need to worry, my friends who seek joy! Here are some effective strategies to help you manage cheek irritation caused by Invisalign and make your journey to a perfect smile more comfortable.

Why Does Invisalign Cause Cheek Irritation?

Several factors can contribute to Invisalign cheek irritation:

  • New Tray Adjustment: Teeth shift with each new aligner tray. Wearing a new tray may irritate the first few days because the aligner edges rub against your cheeks. Some parts of the mouth can be more pressure-sensitive, leading to irritation. Understanding these factors helps address and alleviate discomfort during Invisalign treatment.
  • Sharp Edges:  Manufacturing imperfections or slight variations in your aligner shape can cause discomfort by digging into your cheeks. Contact your orthodontist if you notice any sharp edges. They can make adjustments for a comfortable fit and effective treatment. Addressing these concerns quickly can prevent additional irritation and discomfort while adapting.
  • Uneven Pressure:  Aligner trays may not fit perfectly, resulting in discomfort from uneven pressure on your cheeks or gums. If you experience pain or pressure, it is important to contact your orthodontist. They can help address the issue before it gets worse. Not addressing these issues may result in extended treatment durations and possible complications in your Invisalign journey.
  • Biting Habits:  Do you find yourself chewing on your aligners without realizing it? Pressure and friction can cause discomfort and harm to the aligner trays. Be mindful of biting habits and avoid them for a smooth adjustment with your Invisalign treatment.

10 Powerful Tips to Soothe Invisalign Cheek Irritation

Now that we’ve identified the enemies let’s arm ourselves with weapons to combat Invisalign cheek irritation!

  • Befriend the Emery Board:  Use it gently to smooth out any sharp edges on your aligners. Talk to your orthodontist before making any changes to your aligners. They guide how to file documents safely.
  • Embrace the Power of Dental Wax:  It shields and safeguards your teeth. Smooth out any discomfort caused by your aligner by applying a bit of orthodontic wax to the areas that come into contact with your cheeks. Remove the wax before eating or brushing your teeth. Don’t ingest it.
  • Give Your Mouth a Cool Down: Are you feeling the burn? Applying a cold compress to your cheek for 10 minutes can help reduce inflammation and provide soothing relief for any irritation caused by your aligners. Always listen to your orthodontist’s advice and guidance for any discomfort or issues with your aligners.
  • Saltwater Rinse to the Rescue:  Mix a teaspoon of salt with warm water and gently swish for 30 seconds. This keeps your mouth clean and helps with healing during orthodontic treatment. Maintain good oral hygiene for a smooth and comfortable experience with your aligners.
  • Over-the-Counter Comfort:  If the discomfort continues, you can temporarily relieve it with over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen. Always follow the recommended dosage instructions and contact your orthodontist if the pain persists or worsens. Applying a cold compress to your mouth can also reduce swelling and provide comfort.
  • Patience is a Virtue:  The initial irritation will disappear in a few days as your mouth gets used to the new aligners. If the pain persists or becomes too much, contact your orthodontist for additional advice. Speak up about any concerns or issues you have during treatment.
  • Maintain a Cleaning Routine:  Follow your cleaning routine. Clean your aligners regularly using a soft toothbrush and antibacterial cleanser. This helps prevent bacteria buildup and reduce irritation.


Approximately 20% of the population does not have an ideal bite. Source.


  • Chew Wisely:  Don’t chew on your aligners too much. Irritating your cheeks and damaging the aligners can result in a poor fit. If you’re still irritated, contact your orthodontist. They can advise you on how to ease the discomfort and ensure your teeth align properly.
  • Hydration is Key:  Drinking enough water keeps your mouth healthy and prevents irritation. Stay hydrated by drinking lots of water during the day. This will help keep your mouth moist and comfortable while wearing aligners. Avoid sugary or acidic drinks to prevent bacterial growth and irritation.
  • Don’t Hesitate to Consult Your Orthodontist:  They are experts in Invisalign! If the irritation continues or worsens, make an appointment for a professional evaluation. They can suggest aligner changes or provide tailored solutions for your needs. Your orthodontist is available to assist you in achieving optimal results with your Invisalign treatment. Feel free to ask for help and assistance.

Bonus Tip: Nighttime Relief Strategies

Nighttime discomfort from Invisalign cheek irritation can disrupt your sleep. Here are some additional tips to ensure a restful night:

  • Change Your Aligners Later in the Day:  Switch to your new aligners later. This allows your cheeks to adjust before bedtime.
  • Temporarily Reduce Wear Time:  Consider talking to your orthodontist about reducing your wear time for the first few nights with new aligners.

Invisalign Cheek Irritation: A Temporary Discomfort for a Lasting Smile

Remember that cheek irritation from Invisalign is typically a temporary obstacle as you work towards achieving a straighter smile. Follow the advice given and reach out to your orthodontist if needed. With a little planning and gentle care, you can confidently navigate your Invisalign treatment. You’ll have a beautiful smile soon—no more misalignment or irritation!

FAQs: Invisalign Cheek Irritation

Q: Is Invisalign cheek irritation common?

A: Yes, cheek irritation from Invisalign is quite common, especially when you first start using new aligner trays.

Q: What are the symptoms of Invisalign cheek irritation?

A: Symptoms may include soreness, redness, burning sensations, and small sores on the inner cheeks where the aligners touch.

Q: How long does Invisalign cheek irritation last?

A: Irritation usually disappears in a few days as your mouth gets used to the new aligner shape.

Q: How can I prevent Invisalign cheek irritation?

A: There are several ways to prevent irritation. One is to use dental wax. Another is to keep your aligners clean. Finally, try not to chew on them too much.

Q: What should I do if my Invisalign cheek irritation is severe or persistent?

A: If the irritation is severe or doesn’t improve within a few days, it’s best to consult your orthodontist. Your aligners may need to be adjusted, or alternative solutions may be offered.

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