Braces Care and Foods to Avoid

Caring for Braces

The Cleaner and healthier your teeth are, the more effective the orthodontics appliances are at aligning your teeth. You will be able to eat and drink most foods during orthodontic treatment. Dr. Robert recommends that certain foods be avoided to minimize the breakage of the orthodontic appliances. Avoiding these foods will allow you to achieve the treatment goals with as few disturbances as possible. By following these guidelines it will minimize the side effects of poor food choices and poor oral hygiene. This will also aid in completion of treatment in a timely manner as teeth move their best in a healthy environment.

What foods should I avoid?

Sticky foods are to be avoided because of the increased risk of dental decay and appliance breakage. The foods stick to your braces causing them to break. The sticky foods also remain on your teeth for longer periods of time. 

Foods or drinks that are high in sugar should be avoided or immediately followed by brushing.

Having braces limits the foods that you are allowed to eat. Eating the foods that are note allowed can result in breakage of the orthodontic appliances. This can cause treatment delays as well as extra visits to repair the braces. In general hard, crunch, and sticky foods should NOT be eaten during orthodontic treatment. Any whole fruits or raw vegetables such as apples, carrots, and celery should be cut into bite sized pieces and eaten carefully. Hard breads such as croutons should be avoided. Corn needs to be cut off the cob.

Avoid lemons or limes as citric acid in these fruits can dissolve tooth enamel. Chewing ice cubes can be very destructive to your appliances and your teeth. Do not chew on anything that may cause breakage such as finger nails, pens/pencils, popsicle sticks, etc. Popcorn can cause harm to your braces and gum tissue in multiple ways. The kernels can become lodged under the wires and cause irritation of gum tissue. Un-popped kernels can break brackets as well as bend wires.

Here are some foods to avoid:

Hard foods:

  • Popcorn
  • Nuts, peanut brittle
  • Ice
  • Hard Candy
  • Suckers

Sticky foods:

  • Gum
  • Gummy bears
  • Starburst
  • Skittles
  • Tootsie Rolls

Foods to be sliced:

  • Carrots/raw vegetables
  • Apples
  • Pizza crust

Regular Dental Checkups- Although you are having your braces checked every month, it is extremely important to see your regular dentist every six months for a cleaning, exam and x-rays. If you are experiencing difficulty with good oral hygiene it may be necessary to see your dentist more often.