Everyone who’s ever had braces themselves or spent much time around someone who has them knows that there are certain foods that you aren’t supposed to eat while you have braces. That can seem like an annoyance at best, especially if you really enjoy those foods. But do you understand the reasons why you aren’t supposed to eat these foods?
Some of the foods you aren’t supposed to eat with braces are on the list because they’re tough. It’s hard to beat a good steak, but unfortunately red meats and other tough meats are on the list of foods that are tough enough that they could damage your braces. The same goes for beef jerky, nuts, and tougher breads. The pressure that these types of foods exert on your braces when you eat them can be enough to pop off your brackets and bend the wires.
Sticky foods like gum, caramels, and chewy candies are also on the list of foods you shouldn’t eat with braces. There are a few reasons for this. First, like tough foods, sticky foods can pull brackets off and cause wires to bend. This sort of damage will need to be rectified as soon as possible for your braces to continue straightening your teeth. Second, even if they don’t cause immediate damage to the braces, they can get stuck in your braces and be very difficult to remove. Finally, these types of foods tend to have a high sugar content. This can increase the levels of acid in your mouth and contribute to dental decay.
Other foods are on the no-go list because of their brittle nature. Brittle foods are a problem because they can break and shatter into sharp pieces. Chips are a good example of this, as is popcorn since it has kernels. Sharp pieces of food can get stuck in your braces and are hard to get out. This can cause damage to sensitive oral tissues, increase the risk of dental decay, and be potentially damaging to wires and brackets.
As with most things in life, when you understand the reasons why you are or aren’t supposed to do something, it’s generally a lot easier to follow through. Tough, sticky, and brittle foods can all cause damage to your braces and teeth while you’re wearing them. Avoid damaging them to avoid prolonging your treatment.
Traditional braces aren’t the only option out there. Learn about the benefits of Invisalign and ask Dr. Carver if you’re a good candidate for it at your next appointment.