Food Restrictions With Braces
Modern dental technology has given the world sturdier braces. Giving up one’s favorite foods can be one of the biggest adjustments after getting braces. Nevertheless, there are still some food restrictions for those with braces. Certain foods can damage braces when they become stuck in them.
Damage to braces can include damage to components such as the wires, rubber bands, and even the actual bracket.
The good news is that your orthodontist or dentist knows exactly which foods your child should avoid while they’re wearing braces.
Foods to Eat Right After Getting Braces
Braces don’t hurt, but your child’s mouth may be a bit sensitive right after their braces are put in. When your child’s braces are first placed, they should avoid foods that have a tough texture because certain foods can increase the mouth’s sensitivity.
For the first few days after getting braces, eating these types of foods can greatly reduce sensitivity in your child’s mouth.
- Mashed potatoes
- Scrambled eggs
- Soft cheeses
- Cooked vegetables
- Soft fruits
- Moist desserts
In short, any food that is easy to chew is ideal for eating during those first few days after getting braces. After about a week, there should be no more discomfort.
Foods to Avoid Right After You Get Braces
While there is a long list of soft foods you can eat after getting braces, some soft foods should be avoided. Here is a list of foods to avoid during the first few days after braces are installed.
- Thick bread or rolls
- Ice cream
- Thick cuts of meat
- Citrus foods (oranges, grapefruits, lemons, limes, etc…)
- Spicy foods
As soon as their teeth have adjusted to having braces, your child can begin enjoying these foods again.
Foods to Continue Avoiding for the Duration of Wearing Braces
Unfortunately, there are some foods that your child will need to continue to avoid as long as they are wearing braces. It’s easy to damage braces; fixing them once they are damaged can be costly and troublesome for your child.
Your child will generally need to avoid most hard foods and sticky treats. Eating the right foods will ensure that the braces, bands, wires, and brackets don’t separate from the teeth.
This list shows some of the foods your child should avoid.
- Chewing gum
- Chewy candy
- Sticky candy
- Hard candy
- Hard taco shells
- Bagels and other hard bread
- Hard crackers
- Pizza crust
- Crunchy vegetables and fruit
- Hard chocolate
- Corn chips
Additionally, sugary drinks and foods should be limited while your child is wearing braces. This is because sugar mixed with saliva creates plaque, a sticky film that coats and damages teeth.
It’s OK to enjoy an occasional treat, but practicing good oral hygiene and brushing after consuming sugary treats is important. If plaque isn’t thoroughly removed, your child is at risk for tooth decay.
The Best Foods to Eat While Wearing Braces
While there are some foods to avoid while wearing braces, there are also plenty of delicious foods to eat that won’t damage your child’s braces.
- Grapes, bananas, strawberries, oranges, and any other fruits that don’t have pits
- Mashed potatoes
- Spaghetti, ravioli, and other soft noodle and pasta dishes
- Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches
Your child can also enjoy some of the foods that they would normally have to avoid. The key is to cut these foods up into smaller pieces. For example, any of these foods can be cut into small bite-sized pieces so that they are less likely to damage your child’s braces.
- Soft bread
- Corn on the cob (cut the kernels from the cob)
- Raw veggies
- Thin crust pizza
To learn more about helping your child take care of their teeth while they have braces, contact the team at Ponte Vedra Family Dentistry today. They are also happy to help you with other pediatric dental needs.