Contrary to popular belief, having braces does not mean you have to take a hiatus from all of your favorite foods. What it does mean, is that you have to be careful with how you eat, eat some things a little differently, and substitute a few food items.

For instance, fresh fruits and vegetables should always be a staple in your diet. With braces you should no longer bite into a whole pieces of fruit or vegetables. Rather, cut your apple into small pieces or slices and eat on the sides of your mouth. How about corn on the cob and like foods? Cut the corn off the cob!

When it comes to hard and crunchy foods, you should avoid at all costs. For example, if you are eating pizza, eat everything except the crust. Same for breads like baguettes; eat the soft inside and discard the hard crust. At a mexican restaurant with hard tortilla chips and salsa? Substitute the chips for soft tortillas to dip in the salsa. Fan of popcorn? Replace with Smart Pop or Pirates Booty. This is very important! The “surprise” kernels in popcorn are the most common contributor to broken brackets. Hard crunchy foods are most likely to break your brackets, thus compromising your treatment.

Sticky, chewy foods? These items should always be avoided. The reason being, these items will bend your wire, moving your teeth in ways your Orthodontist does not want your teeth to move. Thus, increasing your treatment time. These foods are consistent with gum, starburst, licorice, etc. Basically, anything that really sticks to your teeth, you should say “no” to.

How about sugary foods and drinks? With or without braces, keep your sugar consumption to a minimum. If you should eat or drink something high in sugar, give your mouth a quick rinse with water. Sugar likes to gravitate to the braces and make a home around your brackets.

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