What are Chewies? Clones of the beloved Star Wars character Chewbacca? Little
Wookiee offsprings? Not really. Chewies are actually small spongy cylinders that one
chews on while wearing Invisalign aligners. They are approximately 2.5cm (1 inch) in
length, and made of a plastic-like material, not unlike pool floating noodles. We offer
our patients non-scented or mint-flavored ones.
How do you use them? You should always follow the instructions of your own
orthodontist when it comes to orthodontic aides of any kind, including Chewies. In
our office, we ask our patients to place them between their teeth in select areas then
clench on them, on and off for 20-30 minutes per day at 5-10 second intervals.
So what are they used for? They have a two-fold function. First and foremost, they
help “seat” the aligner onto the teeth so that there are no gaps or spaces visible
between the plastic of the aligner and your teeth. This allows for ideal adaptation of
the aligner to the teeth and therefore helps the aligner move your teeth more
predictably. Second, the clenching, creates a pumping action on the involved teeth
which presumably helps to bring more blood to the area. With blood comes the
various cells involved in moving teeth; so presumably, this also helps the teeth move.
Some types of movements in orthodontics and especially with Invisalign are not as
predictable. I find that the use of Chewies greatly helps increase predictability.
Please come and see us for a complimentary consultation to see how we can improve
your smile and whether you need to use Chewies for your teeth!
Dr. Pourang Rahimi