Are you going to get braces soon? If so, the first thing that comes to your mind is what foods you can and cannot eat. Braces help straighten teeth and improve dental health, but they also restrict what types of food are allowed while wearing braces. This article will provide an overview of what to eat and not to eat with braces and tips for a healthy diet during braces treatment.
Good oral hygiene is essential for braces, as this will ensure the best possible outcome. Along with brushing twice daily and flossing once daily, following dietary guidelines can make the braces process smoother. While braces may restrict certain items from your regular diet, there are still plenty of options. Please keep reading to find out more about the dos and don’ts when it comes to braces-friendly foods.
What to Eat?
The best braces-friendly diet includes nutrient-dense, soft, and smooth foods that are easy on braces and won’t cause any damage or discomfort while eating. Here are some braces-friendly food options:
Dairy products such as yogurt, milk, cheese, and ice cream can give your body essential vitamins and minerals while helping keep teeth strong during braces treatment. Soft cheeses like ricotta, cottage cheese, and goat cheese are especially braces-friendly as they cause minimal damage to braces and are easy to chew.
Fruits & Vegetables
While fruits and vegetables provide essential vitamins, minerals, and fiber, they also can be braces-friendly in that they are soft and less likely to cause damage. Soft fruits like bananas, peaches, kiwis, oranges, pears, and avocados are great braces-friendly options. Vegetables such as potatoes, cooked carrots, and cooked spinach can also make for braces-friendly meals.
Grains & Legumes
Grains such as oats, quinoa, pasta, and rice can all be braces-friendly if cooked well enough, so they’re not too hard or chewy. Also, legumes such as baked beans, lentils, and hummus can be braces-friendly options when eaten in moderation.
What Not to Eat?
Like there are braces-friendly food items, it’s essential to know what to avoid while wearing braces. Here are some braces no-no foods that should be avoided during braces treatment:
Sticky & Chewy Foods
Sticky and chewy foods like gummy bears, caramel apples, and licorice are all terrible for braces. These foods stick to braces and can be difficult to remove, even with regular brushing and flossing. This can cause cavities or damage that require braces adjustment or removal.
Hard foods like popcorn, nuts, and hard candies also should be avoided while wearing braces. These types of food can quickly get stuck in braces and can cause damage to the braces or even break them off completely. They are also challenging to remove with regular brushing and flossing.
Sugary Beverages & Foods
Sugary beverages such as soda, energy drinks, sports drinks, and sweetened teas are all terrible for braces because they contain high amounts of sugar, which can lead to plaque buildup on braces. Sugary foods such as cakes, cookies, and candy should also be avoided during braces treatment, as these can lead to plaque buildup.
Braces can be a great way to improve dental health, but it’s essential to follow braces-friendly dietary guidelines to get the best results. Eating nutrient-dense, soft and smooth, braces-friendly foods is essential while avoiding sticky and chewy foods, hard food items, and sugary beverages and foods. Following these guidelines during braces treatment can ensure the best possible outcome for your braces experience. Contact your orthodontist to know more.
Q1: How often should I brush my teeth when I have braces?
A1: You should brush your teeth twice a day with braces on. This will help keep your braces clean and free from plaque and food particles.
Q2: Do braces-friendly foods need to be cooked?
A2: Not necessarily; some braces-friendly foods, such as soft fruits like bananas, peaches, and kiwis, can be eaten raw. Other braces-friendly foods such as potatoes, carrots, and spinach may need to be cooked to be brace friendly.
Q3: Are cereal braces-friendly?
A3: Yes, certain cereal types can be braces-friendly if they are soft and not too chewy or sticky. It is best to avoid sugary cereals as these can lead to plaque buildup on braces.