If you wear braces there are some foods you should avoid. In this way, you will be able to keep your appliance and your mouth in good condition.
Last update: September 17, 2022
When starting orthodontic treatment, you may have many questions about the care and maintenance of your new braces. Here we tell you about the foods you should avoid when taking braces.
At feeding time, the best option for health is to eat a healthy, nutritious, balanced and varied diet; even if you wear braces. However, in the latter case there are some aspects that you should consider to avoid inconveniences.
The type of cooking, portion size and texture of the food are factors to consider when using these items. What should be avoided? Which foods to prioritize? Next, we detail it.
Why avoid some foods when wearing braces?
The braces They are small accessories are placed on tooth surfaces to hold a metal arch in traditional orthodontic treatments. Through these, the orthodontist makes small adjustments that apply forces on the teeth.
With these stimuli, the dental pieces are mobilized to modify their position, align them and correct bite problems. Depending on the complexity of the case and the condition to be resolved, these devices are worn for long periods of time in the mouth. Therefore, its care is essential.
Maintain your integrity allows the treatment to run its course and achieve the expected results. On the contrary, if these pieces are damaged, become detached or the arch comes out, the therapy stops.
When treatment is interrupted, treatment times are prolonged and the results may not be as expected. In addition, the patient may feel discomfort, pain and suffer injuries to the oral mucosa due to wearing the broken appliances.
Today there are different variants of treatment that allow placing the braces on the front surface of the teeth or on the lingual side, so that they are not so visible. In addition, they are made of different materials that respond to the needs, priorities and possibilities of the patient; such as metal, porcelain or sapphire.
Orthodontic appliances are prepared to withstand the forces of chewing and the movements that occur while we feed. Still, certain products can harm them. Let’s see.
6 Foods to Avoid When Wearing Braces
As soon as the orthodontist places the braces and the wires in the mouth, It is normal to feel a little discomfort or some discomfort. The pressure that the appliance puts on the teeth to move them causes some pain.
But that uncomfortable feeling disappears with the passing of days. Most people—within a week—are already familiar with the new object in their mouth. In any case, during the adaptation stage it is suggested to make some adjustments in the diet.
In particular, it is advisable to eat foods that do not require much effort to chew and swallow. A bland, bland diet — one that practically melts in your mouth — will prevent overtaxing sore oral structures.
Once the discomfort has subsided, there are also some foods that are best avoided. As we will tell you, there are foods that can damage orthodontics or get trapped between the teeth and the spaces of the appliance, hindering its hygiene.
For example, eating fruit in big bites can unstick the braces. If food remains accumulated in the teeth, the risk of oral diseases such as cavities, gingivitis and periodontitis increases.
Likewise, to avoid these inconveniences, it will be important to consider the texture of the food, or to cut it and eat it in small pieces. What are the foods you should avoid if you have braces?
1. Gum and candy
if you carry braces, it is better to avoid sticky foods. Gum, candy, and candy make hygiene difficult because they stick to braces and tend to get stuck. Chewing gum, in particular, can break or loosen these elements because it involves repetitive chewing and pulling.
The large amount of simple sugars that these products contain favors the accumulation of bacteria and the appearance of caries. By itself, wearing braces makes oral hygiene difficult, which increases the chances of developing the disease. Also, if the diet is very sweet, the risk increases.
These are some of the trinkets that you should avoid if you carry braces:
Raisins and polished fruits.
Popsicles and lollipops.
2. Very hard and crunchy foods
Other foods to avoid when porting braces are those that have a very crunchy texture or are very hard. Eating them requires extra force to cut and chew them, so they can break or detach parts of the orthodontics.
It is also common that when chewing hard food fragments are retained in the spaces of the device, making it difficult to clean. The most common examples are the edges of pizza, toasted bread, crispy crackers, some snacksnuts and popcorn.
It’s also not a good idea to bite into deep-frozen ice or popsicles. In these cases, it is better to suck them.
3. Whole or very hard fruits and vegetables
Biting into an apple or eating corn on the cob can unstick the braces of the teeth. If the appliance is rubbed against very hard or consistent food, some parts of the orthodontics could come loose.
However, this does not mean that you should avoid foods as nutritious and necessary as fruits and vegetables. You just have to change the way you prepare them to ingest them in a more harmless way.
Vegetables can be eaten steamed or pureed. With the fruits you can prepare compotes. If you prefer to eat these foods raw, the ideal is to cut them into small pieces that facilitate their chewing.
Lettuce or lamb’s lettuce salads often leave residue attached to the appliance, making it difficult to remove. Although these vegetables are not a food to be prohibited, if you decide to eat them, it is better to try to clean your mouth thoroughly after finishing.
4. Stringy or bone-in meats
Eating chicken wings or ribs of meat using your hands will not be possible while wearing braces. Eating these animal proteins directly from the bone can damage the appliance or leave bits of food embedded between the teeth and the braces.
This is not to say that meat should be removed from the menu. As with fruits and vegetables, you need to change the way it is prepared and find an easier way to eat it, such as chopped or ground.
Regardless of the way it is eaten, it is always possible that a small piece of meat remains trapped between the braces. To fix this mishap, You should brush your teeth and braces well after eating. In addition, complement hygiene with dental floss, irrigators and specific orthodontic brushes.
5. Foods that stain
It is recommended to avoid colorful foods and drinks with a lot of pigments if you carry braces porcelain or transparent erasers. These highly colored foods can tint fixtures, making them more noticeableor giving them a dirty look. With this, the aesthetic characteristics that are sought are lost.
These are some of the foods and drinks that stain teeth and braces aesthetic:
Carbonated soft drinks.
Any ultra-processed with a lot of dye.
6. Citrus and spicy
Appliances in the mouth are still a foreign body that It can cause small wounds or injuries to the oral mucosa. The brushes of the lips, cheeks, and tongue against the wires and braces They can cause sores or irritation.
Protective wax for orthodontics helps prevent this type of injury. Despite this, they sometimes appear anyway. In those cases, there are some foods that are best avoided until the wounds heal.
Spicy and acidic foods they will increase the discomfort and delay the healing of the sores, so they should be avoided. Citrus fruits, fruit juices, pineapple, vinegar, and spicy or highly seasoned foods are not a good idea if there are ulcerations in the mouth.
What foods to prefer when wearing braces?
Although we already told you about the foods you should avoid if you take braces in the mouth, you may still have doubts about eating during orthodontics. It is very important that during treatment do not avoid food groups because of difficulty eating them.
The necessary alternatives should be sought so that the diet is complete and nutritious. Here we share some foods and ways to prepare them that will make mealtime easier and more comfortable:
Creams and purees: crushing and crushing the ingredients of the preparations avoids the need to chew them and facilitates swallowing.
Soups: another food that provides vitamins and minerals without the need to use the teeth. They can be eaten hot or cold.
Fruits and vegetables: Vegetables can be steamed, boiled, roasted, mashed, or even made into smoothies. The fruits can also be cooked, made into compotes or smoothies fruity. These ways of preparation reduce the effort of the teeth when eating.
Mince: recipes that contain minced meat, such as hamburgers or meatballs, facilitate their intake.
Fish: the fish meat has a soft and firm texture. This makes it an excellent option to incorporate animal protein in an easy way.
Eggs: You can prepare them in different ways and they will all be soft and easy to eat. It is a food that provides balanced fats, proteins, vitamins and minerals.
Salads: you can do without the lettuce and make salads combining tubers or cooked legumes.
Legumes, pasta and rice: well cooked.
Dairy products: yogurt and soft cheeses are milk derivatives that are very easy to eat.
Soft breads: crumb and without crust.
Warm foods: the temperature of the food is another factor to consider. To reduce the sensitivity of the tissues due to the use of the device or due to having sores, the ideal is for the food to be lukewarm. Avoid extreme cold or heat.
Other important care for braces
Now you know the foods that you should avoid and the ones that you should prefer when using the braces. But also, there are other precautions that you have to take into account for your orthodontic treatment to progress successfully.
Eating slowly and chewing carefully is essential to keep the device in good condition, even in those moments of great hunger. Drinking water during meals helps rinse away food debris that gets stuck on the braces.
Try to chew the food with the molars and not with other teeth. In this way, you will avoid problems with the front part of the devices. It is also important not to bite on hard objects, such as pens, pencils, toys, or bite your nails.
Maintaining good oral hygiene habits is essential to take care of orthodontics and maintain oral health. Regular and proper use of toothbrushes, dental floss, fluoride toothpastes and mouthwashes removes trapped food debris.
Avoiding the foods that we mention here, maintaining proper oral hygiene and going to the scheduled controls with the orthodontist will allow you to take care of your braces. With these simple practices you can achieve that healthy and aligned smile that you want so much.
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About The Author
Catherine A. Johnson