Braces are an orthodontic treatment used to correct misaligned teeth and improve bite. While braces can provide long-term benefits, they can also present certain challenges when it comes to eating. Knowing what you can and can’t eat with braces is important to ensure that your orthodontic treatment stays on track and that you don’t experience any discomfort or damage to your braces.
What You Can Eat With Braces
While braces do require some adjustments to your diet, there are still plenty of foods that you can enjoy. Here are some examples:
Soft foods are generally safe to eat with braces, as they are less likely to damage the brackets and wires. Some examples of soft foods include:
- Cooked vegetables (e.g. carrots, broccoli, and green beans)
- Cooked fruits (e.g. applesauce and pears)
- Mashed potatoes
2. Dairy Products
Dairy products are rich in calcium, which is essential for strong teeth and bones. They are also generally soft and easy to eat. Some examples of dairy products that are safe to eat with braces include:
Grains are a good source of fiber, which is important for maintaining good digestion. Some examples of grains that are safe to eat with braces include:
- Soft bread
- Soft tortillas
- Cooked rice
- Cooked quinoa
4. Protein Foods
Protein is essential for building and repairing tissues, and it’s also important for maintaining healthy teeth and gums. Some examples of protein foods that are safe to eat with braces include:
- Soft-cooked meats (e.g. chicken and fish)
- Soft-cooked tofu
- Scrambled eggs
Fruits are a great option for those with braces as they are packed with vitamins and minerals. Some examples include bananas, melons, grapes, and peaches.
6. Cooked Meats
Cooked meats, such as chicken and turkey, are a good option for those with braces as they are easy to chew and won’t damage the braces.
What You Can’t Eat With Braces
While there are plenty of foods you can still enjoy with braces, there are also some foods that you should avoid. Here are some examples:
1. Sticky and Chewy Foods
Sticky and chewy foods can get stuck in the brackets and wires, which can be difficult to remove. They can also pull the brackets off the teeth, which can delay treatment. Some examples of sticky and chewy foods that you should avoid with braces include:
- Gummy bears
- Fruit snacks
2. Hard Foods
Hard foods can damage the brackets and wires, and they can also cause discomfort. Some examples of hard foods that you should avoid with braces include:
- Hard candy
- Hard pretzels
3. Crunchy Foods
Crunchy foods can also damage the brackets and wires, and they can be difficult to chew. Some examples of crunchy foods that you should avoid with braces include:
- Raw carrots
- Corn on the cob
- Hard taco shells
4. Sugary And Acidic Foods
Sugary and acidic foods can increase the risk of tooth decay and gum disease. They can also cause the brackets and wires to become discolored. Some examples of sugary and acidic foods that you should avoid with braces include:
- Sports drinks
- Citrus fruits
Tips for Eating With Braces
Here are some tips to help you eat with braces:
- Cut your Food into Small Pieces – Cutting your food into small pieces can make it easier to chew and reduce the risk of damaging your braces.
- Chew Carefully – Chewing carefully can help you avoid damaging your braces and reduce the risk of discomfort.
- Brush and Floss Regularly – Brushing and flossing regularly is essential to maintaining good oral health while wearing braces. This will help prevent tooth decay and other oral health issues.
- Avoid Sugary and Acidic Foods – Sugary and acidic foods can lead to tooth decay and other oral health issues. It is best to avoid these foods altogether or consume them in moderation.
While braces can present certain challenges when it comes to eating, there are still plenty of foods that you can enjoy. Knowing what you can and can’t eat with braces is important to ensure that your orthodontic treatment stays on track and that you don’t experience any discomfort or damage to your braces. By following the tips outlined in this article, you can ensure that you maintain good oral health and achieve the best possible results from your orthodontic treatment.