What You Should and Should Not Eat While You Have Braces

Having braces comes with certain food restrictions, so knowing what you can eat and what you should avoid is part of ensuring your success. To get that beautiful smile and perfectly straight teeth, follow the guidelines for the best results.


Starting Out


Your mouth is going to be sore and uncomfortable as you get accustomed to having braces. In the first week, you will want to be gentle to your mouth and choose to eat soft foods.

Some examples of appropriate foods include hot cereals like oatmeal, pudding, gelatin snacks, soft boiled or steamed vegetables, soups, mashed potatoes, and smoothies. Eat these types of foods until the initial discomfort subsides.

During Braces Treatment


Wearing braces means that soft foods will always be best, and avoiding hard or chewy foods is crucial to avoid unnecessary pressure on wires and brackets. You especially want to avoid biting into harder foods with your front teeth.

Instead, cut up hard foods into small, bite-size pieces, and chew with your back teeth to avoid pressure on the wires and brackets. Raw veggies, pizza, burgers, steaks, sandwiches, croutons, bread, and apples are all examples of foods to cut into smaller pieces to eat.

Avoid other foods like popcorn, chips, hard or sticky candies, ice, gum, crispy cookies, and crackers because they can cause issues. Popcorn and gum get stuck in braces and can cause significant problems if you cannot get them out. Other problematic foods put too much pressure on your teeth when you try to bite or chew and can cause unwanted visits to the orthodontist to fix things.


Why Avoiding Sugar Is Critical


Sugar combines with saliva to create a film that gets left behind on your teeth. This film results in plaque if not cleaned off properly. While brushing removes plaque, having braces makes cleaning more difficult. If you do not remove the plaque, you will be at a higher risk of tooth decay.

If you must partake in a sweet treat, do so sparingly and wisely. Only occasionally, and if you decide to have that slice of cake or a few soft chocolate chip cookies, make sure you do a thorough cleaning once you have finished.


Wires, Bands, and Braces Get Loose


Once you have braces, you can expect regular appointments with your orthodontist to check and adjust your braces. Wires and brackets can get loose over time as your teeth move into place. Bands and wires can also break between adjustments for various reasons.

Eating crunch or sticky foods you are supposed to avoid can result in a broken wire. Issues can also happen if you pick at your braces or injure your mouth. If you experience any issues, you must make an appointment to get adjustments done.

Give us a call at (562) 396-9820 and schedule an appointment at our Downey, California, office. The team at Ofir Orthodontics is available to discuss food options with you or answer any other questions you might have.