At Bluebird Orthodontics, we’re committed to providing patients of all ages with a beautifully aligned smile. But that’s not all! It’s important to us that your orthodontic experience with our office is positive and stress-free, from your first appointment to the last. We know that choosing to improve your smile with braces is a big decision, and like any new experience, treatment will come with quite a few changes. While most of them are relatively minor, a few can take some getting used to, such as food restrictions.
Food restrictions are often one of the biggest learning curves for our braces patients, but they’re necessary to protect both your appliance and your teeth during the treatment process. We can guarantee that any frustrations will be worth it once your braces are removed and we reveal your beautiful new smile, but we’re here to help you keep things as simple as we can between now and then! Below you’ll find a list of braces-friendly foods we love along with a few tips on how to handle any dietary challenges you may face in the months ahead. Keep reading to learn more!
Braces won’t last forever
There’s no denying that it takes some time and effort to improve your oral health and straighten your smile, whatever the treatment method. There will be some days where you feel like you’ll be in braces forever, but we promise they’ll come off one day! If you can accept from the get-go that you’ll have a few limitations for a while, things will go much more smoothly throughout the process. Hang in there and before you know it, you’ll be enjoying a straighter, healthier, brace-free smile!
Take good care of your teeth
Oral care is important for everybody, not just orthodontic patients. However, it’s especially essential for patients in braces to take good care of their teeth and gums. You should have a good oral hygiene routine in place throughout the treatment process, one that includes brushing at least twice a day for two minutes each time and flossing every night before bed.
We want you to take oral care a step further, though! Try to drink about eight glasses of water a day and aim to eat a diet that’s rich and varied in vitamins and minerals. Confused about what that might look like, especially since you’ll already have restrictions on what you can eat? No worries! There’s still a wide range of healthy foods you can eat while you’re in braces.
Get the day off to a great start
Crusty breads can be an issue for brackets, but there are plenty of other bread products you can enjoy for breakfast, like sliced sandwich bread, waffles, and french toast sticks. Toasting shouldn’t be a problem as long as it’s on a light setting.
Most cereals will be too crunchy for you to eat right out of the box if you’re wearing braces, but if you let them sit in milk for a few minutes, they should soften up enough. If “soggy” cereal isn’t your thing, try oatmeal or grits instead!
Although most fruits are fine as you undergo orthodontic treatment, you’ll need to take precautions with a few. Biting into whole apples can cause damage, so these should always be sliced into smaller pieces or blended into a smoothie or juice first. You should also be careful with fruits that have seeds or stones, like peaches, nectarines, and cherries, since accidentally biting down on the hard inner core can bend or even break a bracket.
Beat the noon slump
As long as you make your sandwiches with soft bread, you’re welcome to dig into them throughout treatment. Common fillings like ham, tuna, deli sliced chicken, and cheese are also compatible with braces! Just be aware that bread can get stuck in your braces, so you may want to cut your sandwich into smaller pieces beforehand. You should also plan to brush after you eat to make sure you’ve gotten rid of any stubborn food particles.
Salads are generally full of vitamins and minerals that will help protect your teeth from cavities and tooth decay. Most of the ingredients are braces-friendly, too, just be sure to cut any cucumbers and peppers into small pieces and steer clear of the croutons!
Soup isn’t just for sick days! It’s nutritious and filling, plus soup is perfect for when your mouth is feeling a little tender after an adjustment appointment.
Round out the day with a filling dinner
Rice and pasta
These family-friendly carbs are easy to eat and won’t cause any issues with your braces. However, you should be mindful if you’re adding other elements to them. For example, chicken should be soft and shredded, or cut into small pieces, before eating. Meatballs should be tender and not overbaked. Even cheese can get too crispy if it’s baked, so make sure it’s melted before you bite into it.
Fish can be a great alternative to tougher cuts of meat like beef and pork, particularly on days when you don’t want to put a lot of pressure on your mouth. Not only is it naturally soft and flaky, but fattier fish like tuna and salmon in particular are a great source of vitamin D. This helps your body absorb and use calcium more effectively.
Raw vegetables should be avoided while you’re in braces, especially in the beginning. Carrots, celery, and broccoli that are too crunchy can cause issues, but boiling, baking, or steaming them is a perfect way to get some veggie goodness. Corn is another one to look out for, as it shouldn’t be consumed on the cob. I’s fine in a pile by itself, though. Most other veggies are great options for braces, no matter how you choose to cook and consume them.
For the best in braces care, choose Bluebird Orthodontics
We can’t deny that braces treatment requires some extra effort on your part, especially where food is involved, but you’ll be surprised by how quickly it goes! Remember that making positive changes to your diet will benefit not only your smile, but many other aspects of your life as well. Knowing that you’re taking steps to improve your oral health, total body health, and your smile can make the time fly by.
If you’re in Commack or the surrounding communities and would like to learn about how orthodontics can give you a beautiful, healthy smile, we’d love to meet you. Get in touch with us today to schedule your FREE consultation with Dr. Frank and our expert team!