Atmore, Daphne, Bay Minette, and Brewton residents wonder, “What can I eat with braces?” You’re not alone. We hear this question all the time at Glass Orthodontics. Dr. Glass wants you to enjoy your braces, and while there are some food sacrifices, you can still enjoy plenty of delicious meals. So, let’s dive deeper into what to avoid, why it’s essential, and some tasty foods you can eat with braces.
Keep Braces Clear of These Foods
Hard or Crunchy Foods
Hard or crunchy foods like popcorn, nuts, hard candy, and ice can also damage your braces and make it challenging to maintain clean teeth. These foods can cause brackets to snap or bend the archwires, which may require an emergency visit to the orthodontist.
Sticky and Chewy Foods
Braces are durable, but some foods can damage the wires and brackets, causing them to lose the necessary tension to straighten your teeth. Braces also make it harder to clean your teeth properly, which can lead to plaque and bacteria buildup. Stay away from sticky and chewy foods like gum, taffy, caramel, and gummies, as they can get caught in your braces and even pull wires or brackets off.
Sugary and Acidic Foods
Limit foods and drinks high in sugar and acidity, like soda, sports drinks, and candy, to prevent tooth decay and discoloration. Frequently consuming these foods and beverages can erode your tooth enamel, causing cavities and white spots around the braces brackets.
Tough, Stringy Foods
Avoid tough, stringy foods like beef jerky, celery, and steak that can get stuck in your braces and be hard to remove. These foods can also be problematic because they require more force to bite, which may cause unnecessary pressure on your braces.
What’s So Wrong With These Foods?
Avoiding these foods helps prevent damage to your braces. Did you know that damaging your braces might extend your treatment time? Yikes! In a worse case, Dr. Glass might have to remove and reapply your braces. Double yikes! Additionally, certain foods can get stuck in your braces, making it difficult to clean your teeth properly and potentially leading to tooth decay and gum disease.
Dairy products like yogurt, milk, and cheese are calcium-rich and help keep your teeth healthy and strong. They also contain phosphorus, which supports bone and teeth development.
Thankfully, you can still enjoy many delicious and nutritious foods with braces. Soft foods like mashed potatoes, cooked vegetables, and scrambled eggs are easy to eat and won’t damage your braces. These are also ideal for those experiencing discomfort after braces adjustments.
Bread and Grains
Bread and grains, such as soft tortillas, pasta, and rice, are easy to eat and won’t damage your braces. These foods provide energy and help keep you feeling full throughout the day.
Soft Fruits and Vegetables
Soft fruits like bananas, berries, avocados, and cooked vegetables like carrots and green beans, are great options for maintaining a balanced diet. These foods are packed with vitamins and minerals that promote overall health and well-being.
Include protein sources like fish, tofu, and soft-cooked chicken in your diet to help build and repair body tissues. Protein is essential for growth and promotes healthy muscles, bones, and skin.
Drinking water is crucial for your overall health and helps rinse away food particles from your braces. It also aids in maintaining a healthy mouth environment by neutralizing acids and preventing plaque buildup.
Soups and Stews
Warm soups and stews are not only comforting but also braces-friendly. Opt for pureed soups or those with small, tender pieces of meat and vegetables. They offer an excellent way to consume essential nutrients and are gentle on your braces.
Smoothies and Shakes
Smoothies and shakes are a great way to enjoy a variety of fruits, vegetables, and proteins while keeping your braces safe. They’re also perfect for those days when your teeth might be sore after an adjustment. Get wacky with your combinations and add in some spinach, kale, or protein powder for an extra nutritional boost.
If you’re craving a snack, plenty of braces-safe options are available. Reach for apple sauce, yogurt, or pudding cups for a sweet treat. If you prefer something savory, choose soft crackers or cheese slices. Remember to brush your teeth after snacking to keep your braces clean and free of food particles.
One of the most important aspects of eating with braces is being mindful of your eating. Take small bites, chew slowly, and avoid biting into foods with your front teeth. This can help prevent braces damage and make orthodontic treatment smoother.
Embracing the Braces Lifestyle
Having braces means adjusting your eating habits, but it doesn’t have to be a negative experience. Think of it as an opportunity to explore new foods, try different recipes, and develop healthier habits that will benefit you long after your braces come off.
Feel free to get creative in the kitchen during your treatment journey. Experiment with new recipes or modify your favorite dishes to make them braces-friendly. For example, steam or roast vegetables to soften them, or use a slow cooker to make tender meats that won’t harm your braces.
Your time in braces is temporary. But Dr. Glass will ensure that it results in a beautiful, confident smile. Sticking to your treatment plan and changing your eating habits will ensure a smooth and successful orthodontic experience. If you have any questions or need further guidance, don’t hesitate to contact Glass Orthodontics at any of our locations in Atmore, Daphne, Bay Minette, or Brewton. We’re here to help you achieve the smile of your dreams! Go here to schedule a free consultation.