Life With Braces

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Eating With Braces

Undergoing orthodontic treatment, such as having braces, is a great way to improve your confidence and oral health. To make your journey with braces as comfortable and effective as possible, we have some essential tips we'd like to share. Let's start with how to eat with braces...

What to eat and not to eat with braces

What Not To Eat

  • Sticky Foods: toffee, caramel candies and sugary gum (sugar-free gum is okay with caution)
  • Chewy Foods: bagels, licorice
  • Crunchy foods: hard granola bars, popcorn
  • Hard Foods: hard candies, nuts

Foods You Need To Bite Into: to protect your braces when eating these types of foods, we recommend cutting apples and carrots into small pieces and cutting corn off the cob

What To Eat

  • Soft Foods: grains such as pasta and soft cooked rice; meats like soft cooked chicken, meatballs, and lunch meats; seafood such as tuna, salmon, and crab cakes; vegetables and fruits such as mashed potatoes, apple sauce, bananas, beans, fruit juice, etc.
  • Dairy: pudding, soft cheese, milk-based drinks
  • Breads: pancakes, muffins without nuts, soft tortillas

Desserts: milkshakes, Jell-O, soft cake, ice cream without nuts or other hard ingredients

Pre and aftercare with braces

Pre- and Aftercare

  • Before eating, ensure any loose wires and bands are secured to avoid discomfort.
  • After eating, thoroughly brush and floss to remove any food particles that may have gotten stuck in your braces. This is essential for preventing cavities and maintaining optimal oral health.

As you get used to your braces, your mouth may feel particularly sensitive, especially in the early stages. But we promise you won't feel sore forever. However, to alleviate some of your discomfort during this transition time, try to eat softer foods that are gentler on your teeth. While you can introduce other foods as you adjust, it's wise to avoid problematic foods throughout your entire orthodontic treatment. This not only protects your braces but it helps you achieve that healthy, beautiful smile you're after.

Brushing and Flossing With Braces

Brushing and Flossing With Braces

Brushing and flossing regularly will keep your teeth and gums healthy. It's also important to keep your breath smelling fresh, as food particles can easily get stuck in the wires of your braces. Here's how to up your braces game and maintain optimal oral health during the treatment process:


  • Use a manual or electric toothbrush that has soft bristles
  • Brush your teeth once in the morning, before bed, and after every meal
  • If you cannot brush after a meal, thoroughly rinse your mouth with water instead


  • Floss nightly to remove plaque and food particles from in between your teeth
  • To gently floss between your gums and braces, use a floss threader to make it easier
Problems with braces

Common Problems With Braces

My Teeth Are Sore

In the one to two weeks after having your braces put on or having the wires tightened, some soreness is perfectly normal. This soreness is due to the pressure being put on your teeth as your braces work to shift them into their correct positions. To temporarily relieve your discomfort, an over-the-counter pain reliever can be taken. Eating soft foods during this time can also help your mouth feel better.

My Bracket Came Loose

Sometimes, when you are eating popcorn, hard candies, foods that are sticky, or run into an accident, a bracket can become loose. While this isn't always cause for emergency intervention, you should consult your dentist or orthodontist as soon as possible. In the meantime, you can cover it with a piece of wet cotton ball or dental wax to prevent irritation to your lips, cheeks, and tongue.

A Wire is Poking Out

Sometimes, a wire may shift and poke into the cheek, causing discomfort. You can gently push the wire back into place using a clean eraser end of a pencil. If the wire cannot be moved into a comfortable position, apply dental wax or a wet cotton ball to the end and visit your orthodontist as soon as possible to have the wire adjusted or trimmed.

I am Experiencing Discomfort

When you first get braces, or after any adjustments, general discomfort in the teeth, gums, and mouth is common. You can try rinsing your mouth with warm saltwater to soothe these areas and prevent infection in the soft tissue. Additionally, applying dental wax to the braces can protect these areas from the wires and brackets' sharp edges. If you are experiencing significant or stubborn pain, please contact our dental office for further instructions.

Playing Sports with Braces

When you play sports, it's important to protect your braces, teeth, and mouth from potential impacts. A protective mouthguard designed for use with braces can be a great investment. It helps cushion your lips, cheeks, and tongue from the braces and prevents a broken wire or other injuries if you're hit in the mouth. We recommend that you consistently wear a protective mouthguard during practices and games to ensure your mouth's safety.

In Case of an Emergency Situation

Life with braces can be an adjustment; however, our team is here to help you get the most out of your orthodontic treatment. This includes providing emergency dental care services. Whether you have a loose wire, a broken bracket, severe trauma, or extreme pain, our team of qualified dentists is here to provide you with the dental care you deserve. Please reach out to our office directly, and we will ensure you get the help you need!