Can you smoke with Invisalign?

Smoking with Invisalign | KYT Dental Services


Introduction In the era where the aesthetics of a straight smile meet the rise of recreational marijuana, individuals using Invisalign face a unique quandary: Can the pursuit of dental perfection coexist with the enjoyment of smoking weed or tobacco? This question holds particular weight considering the commitment Invisalign users make towards maintaining their aligners. Smoking presents a challenge, primarily due to the smoke's potential to cause staining, leading to a compromise in the aligners' discreet nature and effectiveness. In addition, the overall oral health implications of smoking while on Invisalign treatment cannot be overlooked, as it could impede the journey towards an ideal smile. This discussion aims to shed light on practical aspects and considerations for those navigating the confluence of these two lifestyle choices​.

Question 1

Can smoking weed affect Invisalign treatment?

While the act of smoking weed itself may not impede the mechanical action of Invisalign aligners in straightening teeth, it's the associated side effects that raise concerns. The smoke from marijuana contains a variety of chemicals that, like tobacco, can lead to the staining of both your teeth and aligners. Beyond aesthetic issues, these chemicals may contribute to the development of gum disease. Good oral hygiene is critical if you choose to smoke during treatment, including brushing and flossing after smoking to mitigate these risks. Furthermore, smoking can lead to dry mouth, which reduces saliva production — a natural defense against tooth decay and gum disease. Saliva helps to wash away food particles and neutralize the acids produced by bacteria, so a reduction can increase the likelihood of cavities and periodontal problems​.

Question 2

Is it safe to wear aligners while smoking?

When smoking, the heat and smoke can cause the Invisalign aligners to become discolored and possibly distort in shape. This distortion can affect how the aligners fit, which is crucial for them to work effectively. The best practice is to remove the aligners before smoking. After smoking, it's important to clean your teeth thoroughly to remove any residual smoke and particles. The aligners should also be cleaned separately. You should wait at least 30 minutes before reinserting the aligners to allow your oral environment to return to a more normal state, minimizing the risk of trapping harmful substances against your teeth​​.

Question 3

Are there safer alternatives to smoking that won't affect Invisalign?

When considering the impact of smoking on Invisalign aligners, exploring safer alternatives is crucial. Cannabis edibles or oils are preferred over traditional smoking methods because they do not involve inhalation of smoke or exposure to heat, both of which can damage the aligners. Edibles and oils bypass the oral cavity in terms of smoke exposure, therefore they do not cause discoloration or warping of the aligners. Additionally, these alternatives do not contribute to dry mouth to the same extent that smoking does, thus reducing the risk of cavities and gum disease associated with decreased saliva production. However, maintaining good oral hygiene remains essential, as edibles can still contribute to tooth decay if proper brushing and flossing are neglected​​.

Use a Bong | KYT Dental Services


In conclusion, while Invisalign aligners offer a discreet and effective method for straightening teeth, they require care to maintain their clarity and function. Smoking, whether it be marijuana or tobacco, presents several risks that can compromise the aesthetics of the aligners through staining and the health of your oral cavity. For those committed to both their smoking habits and dental correction, the use of edibles or oils is a more aligner-friendly alternative. Ultimately, the best course of action is to engage in an open dialogue with your dental care provider to tailor a strategy that aligns with your lifestyle and ensures the health and effectiveness of your Invisalign treatment. Regular dental check-ups, excellent oral hygiene, and a mindful approach to smoking can all contribute to a successful outcome with Invisalign.

If you choose to smoke, consider utilizing a bong filled with ice. The ice can help cool the smoke, reducing the heat exposure to the clear aligners and lessening the risk of them warping or distorting.

- Dr. Isaac Sun, DDS