It is possible to enjoy your diet while still keeping your teeth and braces in good shape!
Hard foods can break wires, knock brackets loose or damage elastic bands. Your braces stop working whenever they get damaged. This essentially pauses your treatment and only adds to the overall length of your treatment time. Plus, an unplanned trip to the orthodontist for repairs could cause an inconvenient disruption to your schedule.
Debris from foods high in sugar can cling to your brackets and stay in contact with your teeth for a long time. This long-term exposure to food debris increases your risk of enamel erosion and tooth decay.
Braces can be uncomfortable after each orthodontic adjustment. Your teeth will feel sore after the wires are tightened because the process puts pressure on your gums, jawbone, tooth roots and the ligaments around your teeth. You can minimise the discomfort by eating the right foods.
What should you eat after an orthodontic adjustment? Choose foods that are soft to limit the need to chew. You can also enjoy cool foods that can help soothe sore gums.
We recommend foods like:
Your mouth will likely feel much better within a couple of days of your braces adjustment and you will be ready to eat other kinds of foods.
Foods that are hard, crunchy, chewy or sticky can bend wires or even dislodge brackets. It may not be easy to say no to your favourite crunchy snacks during orthodontic treatment, but braces are not forever. The final outcome is worth the short-term sacrifice.
Foods that can damage braces:
Chewing gum (there are exceptions, so ask your orthodontist which type is safe)
This is only a basic list; there are other foods you may have to temporarily avoid. In general, stay away from anything crunchy or hard unless it is ground or chopped finely so that you do not have to bite into it.
When you are straightening your teeth, you have a foreign object stuck to them at nearly all times. This is true for both regular metal braces and for clear aligners such as InvisalignⓇ. Both metal brackets and clear aligners provide extra surfaces to collect plaque and food debris. When this debris is in contact with your teeth for a long time, it can begin dissolving your enamel and increase your risk of tooth decay.
We recommend that you limit your between-meal snacking during orthodontic treatment. You will be more likely to have clean healthy teeth when your treatment is finally over.
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