Eating with Braces: Pick This, Not That


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Adjusting to braces can be a challenge! The teeth are often sore in the days that follow the application of braces or an adjustment. It’s essential to properly care for your braces throughout your treatment—not just to protect your smile, but to receive a speedy treatment with minimal discomfort! So what foods should you pick when it comes to your braces?

Hard Candy: Replace with Ice Cream

Hard or sticky candies such as peppermints, caramels, gummy bears, or taffy are not safe for your braces! These destructive sweets not only increase your risk for cavities, but they can also get lodged in your braces and be difficult to remove. They can even cause brackets or rings to come loose! Hard candy can be replaced with soft, delicious ice cream! Ice cream also tends to be high in calcium, which can help strengthen your teeth. Look for ice creams with limited added sugar such as sorbet, fruit pops, or even dairy-free alternatives like coconut milk ice cream.

Crunchy Cereal: Replace with a Smoothie

Those crunchy breakfast cereals are a popular morning staple—but they’re also hard to chew with your tender teeth! You can replace morning cereal with a smoothie which will be gentle on your smile and full of nutrients! You can add vegetables, fruits, and milk or yogurt for a delicious and healthy alternative to that crunchy cereal.

Apples and Firm Fruits: Replace with Soft Fruits

Biting into an apple or another firm fruit can seem impossible with your braces, and should be avoided in order to prevent damage to your orthodontia. However, you have plenty of options when it comes to soft fruits! You can replace with melons, mangoes, bananas, kiwi, and even yogurt or applesauce. Fruit combined with yogurt makes a great snack, dessert, or even a breakfast treat and can be soothing on your tender smile!

Raw Crunchy Vegetables: Replace with Soups

Raw veggies such as carrots and celery are great for you—but they can be difficult to crunch into with your braces! Try replacing raw vegetables with cooked ones, such as in a soup! Mashed potatoes also make a great meal addition and are super easy to eat with braces.

Hard Breads, Crackers, or Pretzels: Replace with Soft Breads or Pasta

Crunchy breads, hard pretzels, and crunchy crackers are a favorite among many people. These can be difficult to eat and can damage your braces, so try to stay away from them! You can replace them with softer breads, soft pretzels, and even pasta. Pasta is often easy to eat and can be versatile—macaroni and cheese, spaghetti, lasagna, even cold in pasta salads can be easy and tasty to consume with your braces.

Tough Meats: Replace with Tender Meats, Stews, or Eggs

Chewing on meat isn’t always easy on your teeth when you’re receiving orthodontic treatment. These tough meats are easily caught in your braces and can injure your smile! Instead of tough meats such as steak or even breaded meats like fried chicken, replace with tender meats: soft turkey, beef or ham stew, or baked chicken. You can also take advantage of hard-boiled, scrambled, or fried eggs—these are easy to eat with braces.

When it comes to food, you can make smart choices and replace some of the tougher foods you used to eat with safe alternatives: so pick this, not that with your orthodontic treatment!

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Eating with Braces: Pick This, Not That
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When it comes to food, you can make smart choices and replace some of the tougher foods you used to eat with safe alternatives: so pick this, not that!

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Quoc Lu
Quoc Lu

Dr. Lu is highly trained in the latest orthodontic techniques and treatments for pediatric, adolescent, and adult patients. He is a specialist in Invisalign, Invisalign Teen, traditional and self-ligating bracket systems and high-technology wires and appliances. Dr. Lu is currently a leading orthodontist at First Impression Orthodontics in Alexandria, VA.

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