Dr. Lauren Windhorst of Choice Orthodontics knows that a bright, confident smile can do wonders for your self-esteem. Braces (or one of our other orthodontic treatments like Invisalign) can help you achieve that beautiful smile, but to get the best results in as fast a timeframe as possible, it is important that you take care of your orthodontic treatment along the way. Part of that means avoiding certain foods that could be harmful to your orthodontic appliances.
Hard, Sticky, & Sugary
There are different types of foods that can negatively impact your braces, including sticky foods, hard foods, and sugary foods. Hard foods can potentially break your brackets and wires while sticky foods can get caught in between them. Additionally, because it is more difficult to clean your mouth and maintain proper oral hygiene while wearing braces, sugary foods should be avoided. If sugary particles are missed during your brushing and flossing routine then you could develop tooth decay and other health problems.
In most situations, common sense will help you determine what foods could potentially be bad for your braces. That being said, our Northwest Missouri orthodontist and her team have compiled a list of foods you should avoid if you want to maintain the health of your teeth, progress of your orthodontic treatment, and well-being of your braces.
- Beef jerky
- The crispy crust of pizza
- Caramels, taffy, milk duds, bubblegum, etc.
- Hard candy bars, frozen candy bars (Snickers, peanut brittle, Butterfinger, etc.)
- Hard candy (Jolly Ranchers, Tic Tacs, etc.)
- Popcorn (unpopped kernels are hard and the shells often get stuck in your gums)
- Hard shell tacos and tortilla chips (try burritos or soft shell tacos)
- Hard, thick potato chips and corn chips (Doritos, Fritos, Corn Nuts)
- Ice (okay in drinks, but do not chew it)
- Popsicles, hard frozen ice cream (soft serve is ok or let it sit for a while)
- Raw carrots, apples, celery (you must cut them in small pieces)
- Gummy bears, licorice, tearjerkers, starburst
Consume with Care
There are certain foods that don’t pose as much of a threat to your braces as those featured on the above list, but could still cause you problems. These foods are okay to eat; our orthodontist just recommends that you are careful while consuming them. They include:
- Corn on the cob (cut off the cob)
- Sugarless gum that is not sticky: Carefree, Trident, Extra, etc. NO BUBBLEGUM
- Fresh fruits and vegetables that have been cut into small pieces
- Thin chips like Lays, Pringles, Cheese Puffs
Visit Choice Orthodontics Today
Patients across the Northwest Missouri area trust Dr. Windhorst and her staff with the development and care of their smiles. To make an appointment in our Saint Joseph or Gallatin, MO office, please fill out our online form or contact us directly. We look forward to hearing from you and helping you smile brighter!