A Guide to Foods that are Ok for Braces and Which to Limit

Anyone that has experienced the joys of having braces knows that some of your favorite foods become some of your worst enemies. That scrumptious bag of Jolly Ranchers quickly turns into a bracket destroyer. One second you are enjoying many delectable foods of the world (and because it is mostly teenagers who have braces “delectable foods” means Doritos and Double-Stuffed Oreos) and the next you are stuck with pea soup and vegetable ribbons. Not to fret, while your braces work their magic you can still enjoy some of you favorite snacks.

Let’s take a look at the green light foods for braces and the caution/stop/red light foods that have the potential to damage either your brackets, wires, or both.

Red Light Foods

  • Pretzels – This salty snack has the potential to bend wires and knock off brackets
  • Sugary Candy – Sugar is bad for your teeth in general because it creates the bacterial that leads to tooth decay. If you have braces it is even more harmful due to the bacteria that gets stuck around the brackets
  • Ice Cubes – Crunching on ice is a no-no even for those who do not have braces, but they are a killer when it comes to your brackets
  • Hard Cookies – If you must indulge, dunk them in milk or just stick with soft cookies
  • Taffy – This sticky treat can pull brackets off and bend wires while you chew
  • Pizza Crust – During the time you have braces you must accept the fate that you are now
    “One of those people” that eats their pizza, but leaves the crust
  • Apples – These are actually ok to eat, but make sure you don’t bite into the apple whole. Cut it into wedges instead
  • Chicken Wings & Ribs – You don’t have to say goodbye to these game-day snacks, you simply need to cut the meat off the bone and enjoy
  • Pickles – If you must feed this craving, cut them into bite-size pieces
  • Fingernails – A perfect time to kick this bad habit
  • Corn on the Cob – Another food that requires you to cut the kernels from the cob before you eat devour them at a summer barbecue
  • Beef Jerky – This leathery snack will have no mercy your braces
  • Pens and Pencils – You would think this one wouldn’t be on the list, but many students have a habit of chewing on these school supplies
  • Raw Carrots – If your love for carrots is out of this world, steam or boil them to rid them of their crunchy consistency

Green Light Foods

  • Soups – This liquid meal shows no threat to your brackets or wires (this would also include chili)
  • Soft Treats – Pudding, applesauce, bananas, smoothies, jello, ice cream (Yum!)
  • Bread – As long as it’s soft bread, such as tortillas, biscuits, pancakes, and muffins
  • Eggs – Breakfast is saved with a plate of scrambled, hard boiled, over easy, or soft boiled eggs.
  • Seafood – Tuna, salmon, cod, or crab cakes are among the seafood delights that won’t harm your braces
  • Dairy Products – Soft cheeses and yogurt are perfectly harmless
  • Cooked Beans – Bring on the lima, kidney, and black beans
  • Soft Fruits – Oranges, tangerines, nectarines, and grapefruit are not only a healthy snack, but they won’t take a toll on your braces

These are only a few examples of the dos and don’ts when it comes to food and taking care of your braces. Just keep in mind that the rule of thumb is: to stay clear of any sticky, chewy, or hard candies, and bite size pieces are best. If you have any questions about what foods you can or cannot eat while wearing braces, don’t hesitate to contact our office. And if you or your child is in need of braces we are just a phone call away. Our friendly and knowledgeable staff is ready and waiting to turn your misaligned teeth into a straight and beautiful smile.

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