Wearing braces can certainly take some getting used to! From navigating the kinds of foods that you can and can not eat, to figuring out a new nighttime routine for brushing your teeth, the transition to orthodontics is not the easiest. With this in mind, our experienced staff has created a quick list to guide you through the process! Below, we’ve outlined the top ten foods and habits to avoid while wearing your braces.
10 Foods and Habits to AVOID:
- SUGARY DRINKS – Stay away from beverages that are high in sugar, including Gatorade and all sodas.
- SKIPPING THE BRUSHING! – It is important to maintain your oral hygiene while wearing braces. It is ideal to brush teeth after every meal.
- HARD/STICKY CANDIES – This is a tough one; many of the biggest culprits are the tastiest treats! However, in order for your orthodontics plan to work properly, it is important to avoid candies like Now and Laters, gummy bears, taffy, caramel, sugar chewing gum, and Airheads.
- BITING WITH THE FRONT TEETH – Using your front teeth to bite into hard foods can break a bracket; it may also feel uncomfortable if you have recently gotten braces. Try biting with your side teeth instead.
- HARD FRUITS AND VEGETABLES – Stick to softer foods like applesauce and mashed sweet potatoes. Be sure to avoid nuts as well!
- WEARING THE WRONG MOUTH GEAR – For those that play sports, make sure to wear the appropriate mouth guards made SPECIFICALLY FOR BRACES each and every time you enter the field. If you have questions about which guards you should be using, do not hesitate to ask us during your next visit.
- CHEWING ON PENS AND PENCILS – Chewing on these items may cause braces and wires to break, slowing down treatment.
- NOT FLOSSING – This is a bad habit for those who wear braces and those who do not. Flossing removes food that can slip in between the tooth and gums; with all the bacteria that is found in our mouths, these trapped pieces of food can cause cavities. Gum disease, bleeding, and inflammation may also occur if flossing is not a regular part of your oral hygiene routine.
- FORGOING FLUORIDE – Fluoride is a natural mineral that helps to strengthen the tooth’s enamel (outermost surface). By doing so, it protects your teeth from acid in foods that can cause tooth decay.
- SKIPPING TEETH CLEANING – An essential part of the orthodontic journey is scheduling a teeth cleaning with your dentist every six months!
For more tips on what to avoid or to schedule a consultation, please be sure to contact our offices.