Good oral hygiene habits such as brushing and flossing are especially important for people wearing braces. To protect your hardware, we recommend avoiding certain foods that could interfere with braces or accidentally bend the wires. These foods may include nuts, popcorn, hard candy, ice and sticky foods like chewing gum, caramel, or other chewy candy. Avoiding foods you like may not be fun, but eating things that you’re not supposed to eat can cause broken wires or brackets. These can not only be painful, but can actually prolong treatment. In other words, break the rules and you could be stuck with your braces for even longer. Here is a quick list of foods we recommend eating, and foods we recommend avoiding.
- Caramel and gooey chocolate bars
- Hard candies
- Chewy candy, taffy, and gummy bears/worms
Use caution when eating:
- Chewy bread such as bagels: Try tearing it into small pieces
- Chips: Eat them carefully and one at a time
- Corn on the cob: Cut it off the cob
- Apples and carrots: Cut/slice them into small pieces
- Soda and sugary drinks: Avoid these whenever possible, as drinking too much can cause tooth decay
- Hulless popcorn
- Light crackers or cookies
- Mashed potatoes
- Peanut butter and jelly
- Ravioli, spaghetti, macaroni and cheese, and other noodle dishes
Maintaining a healthy, nutritious diet is important for everyone’s teeth and overall health. The healthier you are, the better the results of your orthodontic treatment will be because a proper diet provides all the essential nutrients to bones and tissues undergoing change.