Do I Have Food Restrictions When Wearing Braces?

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Do I Have Food Restrictions When Wearing Braces?

Braces will change your smile and your life in more ways than one. Keep reading to discover how to ensure your braces do their job quickly and efficiently by following these simple dietary guidelines.

Invisalign® revolutionized the world of teeth alignment, and we love them here at Lovely Smiles Orthodontics in Richmond, Texas. But Dr. Nicole Thompson and our team know that traditional braces are sometimes the better choice, depending on the condition we need to treat.

The good news is that braces have made a lot of technical advances over the years, and you may be surprised to learn about their new features. Here. Dr. Thompson explains when braces may be necessary and addresses one of the questions we often hear: Will I have food restrictions?

When are braces better than clear aligners?

Invisalign can do many things braces can do, but they have limits. For example, they’re not the best choice for:

  • Extreme gaps
  • Intrusion and extrusion issues where we need to move your teeth up or down
  • Severely rotated teeth
  • Serious midline problems where your front teeth don’t line up with the center of your face

In these cases, Dr. Thompson recommends traditional braces. They’re powerful enough to move teeth, even when the problem is complex. 

Braces are also permanent, so you can’t lose them or forget to wear them.

Advancements in braces

These days, braces are smaller and less obtrusive than older versions, making them more comfortable. You can also choose from a wide array of colors for your brackets and wires. 

If you want to go incognito, you can choose clear or tooth-colored ceramic braces that blend in with your teeth. Using the LightForce® system, the first three-dimensional printed braces, we customize your braces precisely according to your unique treatment plan.

Or, you can express yourself with Wild Smiles Braces® that come in cool shapes like hearts, stars, and flowers.

You still have to avoid certain foods

One thing that hasn’t changed about braces is the food restrictions. Here’s a list of foods to avoid while you’re wearing braces, but it’s not exhaustive. Before you eat or drink something, ask yourself if it might stain, break, or get stuck in your braces. 

When you first get your braces, your mouth may feel a bit sore. It’s best to stick to soft foods like mashed potatoes, scrambled eggs, pasta, soups, yogurt, and smoothies. 

After a few days, you can graduate to chewable foods, but keep in mind that not all permissible foods will feel good in the early weeks. You may need to work your way up to the point where spicy, acidic, and cold or hot foods don’t irritate your teeth and gums.

Once you’ve had your braces on for a while, you can eat anything that doesn’t damage your braces — think hard, sticky, chewy, gooey foods. Here’s a partial list of foods to avoid:

  • Gum
  • Chips and pretzels
  • Popcorn
  • Nuts
  • Hard or chewy candy
  • Ice
  • Bagels and pizza crust
  • Raw fruits and vegetables

If one of your favorite foods is on the list, it may be a sacrifice to give it up for the duration of your treatment. But most treatments only last a year or two, and you can return to enjoying your favorites again. 

Meanwhile, follow our braces care guidelines for keeping your braces in top condition, and the time will fly by. 

For more information about braces and other orthodontic options, give us a call or schedule your consultation using our online booking tool.