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What To Eat With Braces

Your new life with braces

So, you have new braces. Your mouth feels a bit funny (and may be hurting a bit, too). Your mouth may even feel like it’s heavier because of the extra material on your teeth. If this is your first experience with braces, then you will feel like you won’t have many food options.

It is true that some foods cause more damage than good when eaten with braces. You don’t want to consume foods that hinder your braces’ ability to move your teeth. Also, you don’t want to consume foods that may loosen or break your brackets.

All dentists will agree that sticky, crunchy, and tough-to-chew foods will extend the time of having braces and cost more in dentist visits. However, you will be able to eat a lot of the foods you like while wearing your braces. Therefore, you should not worry about having to eat bland foods that are not satisfying to eat. A little self-discipline, careful chewing and extra use of your knife and fork will go a long way to help you find foods to eat while you have braces.


Acceptable foods to eat with braces

Soft foods are highly recommended after the first few days of getting your braces. Also, you may want to avoid all meats, breads and vegetables that are ‘al dente’ or appear to be hard to chew. Remember, the objective is to eat foods with the delicacy of your braces in mind.

Here is a brief list of some foods that are good to eat when wearing braces:

  • Fruits – juice, bananas and apple sauce
  • Vegetables – beans, peas, steamed spinach, mashed potatoes and yams
  • Meats/poultry – meatballs, lunch meats and soft-cooked chicken
  • Grains – soft-cooked rice, pasta and noodles
  • Dairy – soft cheeses and pudding
  • Breads – sliced sandwich bread, pancakes, muffins (no nuts), soft tortillas, pancakes and biscuits
  • Seafood – filleted fish, tuna and salmon
  • Treats – milkshakes, smoothies, jelly, cake and ice cream (no nuts)
  • Other – hamburgers, hot dogs, eggs, chilli, beans and other soft meals that are not sticky!


Foods you shouldn’t eat with braces:

  • No ice. It will cause severe damage to your braces.
  • Hard foods like pretzels, bagels, nuts, raw vegetables, pizza crust and chips will knock off brackets and wires if eaten.
  • Tough meats will loosen brackets and wires.
  • Hard chips like Doritos and taco shells can cause a hard ball on your braces. This will make them difficult to take off (and may be painful).
  • Sticky foods (most soft sweets) may pull brackets off and cause tooth decay when they get stuck between the wires and brackets.


A final word on eating with braces

Keep in mind this list is not a representation of all the foods you could eat with braces. For items not listed on this page, just consider what it’s like to chew the food. If the food is easily chewable and not sticky, then you can eat it in small pieces to reduce the odds of damaging your braces.

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