Aligners: What To Do When It's Party Time
The holidays are just around the corner, and we know what that means! Office parties, holiday parties, family gatherings, and other drinking occasions abound. If you’re in aligners, you definitely want to join in the festivities, but you don’t want to derail your treatment. You're already well-versed in how to handle meals with your aligners by now, but what about all the drinks? We’re going to tell you how to *best* choose your beverages!
Remember: Aligners are like saran wrap
The thing you need to remember is that your aligners are like Saran Wrap for your teeth. *Anything* on your teeth is held fast in place by those aligners when you put them back in. You might think that the liquids you’re consuming are disappearing entirely down your throat, but that’s not the case. They are coating your teeth in a microscopic layer first.
One thing you can do to minimize damage if you know you’re not going to be able to step away and brush thoroughly before replacing your aligners is to choose your beverages wisely.
It IS a little tricky to avoid BOTH color and high sugar content, but it is in fact possible. And let’s be realistic- it’s the holidays and you’re likely to indulge a little. You don’t have to be perfect— think of this as a guide to making *better* choices.
So What To Order?
Highballs: Perfect Simplicity
You might be thinking, “I love clear drinks! Bring on the gin & tonic! I’m safe!”
Well, I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but tonic water actually contains just as much sugar as regular Coca-Cola. I know, it’s a shock.
In terms of basic cocktails, it doesn’t get better than a clear spirit and soda for the aligner-wearing party-goer. Vodka, gin, tequila, light rum- they’re all great. For additional flavor, a twist of any citrus peel adds a ton of aromatic oils. You can also squeeze in a citrus wedge, or muddle some mint in the glass.
Higher Octane: "Make It Strong"
If you’re something a little more high-octane, there’s always the martini. Keep in mind that blanc and sweet vermouth actually contain quite a bit of sugar, but dry vermouth does not. A dry martini, whether made with vodka or gin, up or rocks, twist or olives— is always a classy (and safe for your aligners!) choice.
For a fancy option, feel free to try a Tuxedo #1, a gin martini made with dry vermouth and an absinthe rinse.
If you’re feeling adventurous, an old fashioned is a cocktail template that doesn’t need to contain a lot of sugar— make it with tequila and a grapefruit twist and you’ll have a delicious beverage that is light on sugar and color, without sacrificing one bit of flavor!
How About Beer and Wine?
There are three main considerations when choosing a beer or wine when in aligners: color, sugar, and acid.
Color is easy: stouts, porters, and red wine can all leave a mark. To be safe, choose lighter-colored beers and white wines.
In terms of sugars, beer drinkers are pretty safe as generally all the sugar is fermented away. Many ciders, however, do have residual or added sugar. Find some lower-sugar options here. (For comparison's sake, a can of coke contains 39g of sugar.) When thinking of wine, the situation gets a little more tricky. Most wines ferment away all the sugar that comes from grapes. Certain styles, however, leave some residual sugar behind. This includes wines labeled "sec" or "demi-sec", some champagnes, and sweeter white styles such as Moscato d'Asti. Understand more about the sugar content of wine here.
When thinking about acid, everyone needs to be careful. All wine is technically acidic, even if it's not considered a high-acid wine. Sour beers can be extremely acidic, as can ciders. This acid can damage the enamel on your teeth over time, so it's best not to saran-wrap it to your teeth with your aligners.
But What If I Like Whiskey? Or Red Wine?
No matter what beverages you'll be enjoying this holidays season, just be aware that the sugars, acids, and colors in beverages are no different than those in foods, and need to be removed from your teeth as soon as possible. Even a water rinse when you can't brush is better than nothing!
The color molecules in red wine are particularly staining (as you know if you’ve ever, ahem, spilled wine on yourself) and breaking those up with hydrogen peroxide before getting your aligners back on can go a long way to preserving your bright white smile. EverSmile AlignerFresh fits in your purse or pocket and is designed to do just that!
2 oz gin of choice
1 oz dry vermouth
Add all ingredients to mixing glass and top with ice. Stir 30 seconds. Pour .25 oz absinthe into chilled coupe and turn the glass to coat the inside; discard any remaining absinthe in the glass. Strain cocktail into coupe. Garnish with a lemon twist and enjoy!
Tequila Old Fashioned:
2 oz blanco tequila of choice (100% agave)
.25 oz cinnamon simple syrup**
1 dash angostura bitters
1 dash orange bitters
Combine all ingredients in mixing glass and stir 30 seconds. Strain into rocks glass over fresh ice and garnish with grapefruit twist. Enjoy!
**cinnamon simple syrup: Combine 1 cup sugar, 1 cup water, and 2 smashed cinnamon sticks in small saucepan and heat to dissolve. Allow to cool to room temperature, then strain and store refrigerated.
If you prefer, you may use regular simple syrup in this recipe instead of cinnamon:
**simple syrup: Combine 1 cup sugar and 1 cup water in small saucepan and heat to dissolve. Chill and store refrigerated.
Quantity: 2 bottles
Volume: 10ml per bottle
Lasts: 60 days if used twice a day
- Cleans Invisalign and clear retainers
- Removes aligner build up and freshens breath
- Gradually whitens teeth with no sensitivity