Dentures and Dentist

Dentures and Dentist

Can Transparent Retainers Dry Out Your Mouth?

Julian Andrews

Whether you use invisalign braces or another form of transparent retainer, this nifty orthodontic device is meant to fix problems, not cause them. Although your transparent retainers aren't going to cause any major issues, some patients might find that they're experiencing a curious complication shortly after they begin using their new transparent retainers. Why are your retainers drying out your mouth? And is this something you need to live with, or can the problem be solved?

A Temporary Inconvenience

Not everyone will have to deal with a noticeably dry mouth after receiving their first set of transparent retainers, and even for those who do—it's not going to be severe, nor will it be an ongoing issue. Think of it as a temporary inconvenience during the adjustment period. But what causes this to happen at all?

Light Pressure

Whether you use invisalign, clearcorrect, or another form of transparent retainer, the process works by applying light and consistent pressure to your teeth in order to gradually shift them into the desired alignment. This pressure can cause some very minor gum irritation and even swelling. In response, your body's immune system reduces saliva production, drying out your mouth. 

A Few Solutions

While this might be rather inconvenient, remember that this issue is only going to be temporary. Gum irritation and swelling are not a continuing side effect of the process, and your mouth should adjust rather quickly, with your saliva levels returning to normal. If the issue is particularly annoying, then there are a few things you can do:

  • Don't forget to keep your hydration levels up. Your mouth is dry, so if you regularly sip water throughout the day, you will maintain an adequate moisture level in your mouth.
  • Suck on sugarless sweets or chew some sugarless gum. This stimulates saliva production, keeps your breath fresh, and doesn't damage your teeth.
  • Ideally, you should eliminate all consumption of alcohol and tobacco during your treatment. These substances can contribute to oral dehydration. If you find yourself unable to quit entirely, you should at least sharply reduce your consumption. 

When to See a Dentist

Your dry mouth won't necessarily be caused by your transparent retainers, but if the issue arose once you received your retainers, then a fairly clear connection between the two can be assumed. If the problem doesn't subside and can't be managed with maintaining your hydration levels, please see your dentist. They will need to rule out any other causes, and can recommend a saliva-producing medication that will not affect your transparent retainers.

You might not have to deal with dry mouth at all once you get your new set of transparent retainers or Invisalign braces, and even if it does affect you, please remember that the problem should not be an ongoing one.


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About Me
Dentures and Dentist

Hello, my name is Jack. I am now 79 years old. As you can imagine, my teeth have taken something of a battering over the years. I lost a couple of teeth in a bar fight, four more decayed and one had to be extracted when it became infected. After losing so many teeth, my dentist suggested that I have dentures fitted. I was worried about this but my dentist was really great. He helped explain the procedure and then did an excellent job. I love my new dentures and I wanted to start this blog to offer help to others.