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Foods to Eat (and Avoid) While Wearing Braces

Getting dental braces is not a painful process. Since they straighten teeth and correct jaw misalignment, it may cause discomfort and inconvenience, especially when you’re chewing or eating. That sensation will fade in time, though you may find it hard to bite down or chew at first.

If you’re planning to get braces, know that you can minimize tooth sensitivity and pain by consuming the right types of food while avoiding the rest.

Young girl wearing glasses and braces puts food on fork into her mouth

Foods You Can Eat

In the days following your appointment, your mouth might be quite sensitive. Choose foods that are easy to chew, such as liquid or soft foods, to avoid any pain.

#1 Bananas

Whichever type of braces you may want the dentist to install, you shouldn’t starve yourself while you have them on. If you want a quick snack, grab a ripe banana or two. Opt for slightly brown bananas since these will be softer. It makes it less likely to put pressure on your teeth, and it’s easier for you to chew.

Bananas also provide health benefits, such as increased potassium intake. Potassium aids in managing blood pressure, and it decreases strain on the cardiovascular system. They also contain fibre and water, which encourages digestive health and promote regularity. They also have lectin, which acts as an antioxidant and can help prevent leukemia cells from

#2 Applesauce

If the braces for your teeth are causing you some discomfort, applesauce is an ideal food choice. Depending on your taste, you can eat it cold or at room temperature. You can also easily pack it in your bag when you’re on the go.

Freshly made applesauce also offers health benefits. It has phytochemicals, which may help reduce your risk of heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. Meanwhile, store-brought brands have vitamin C, which boosts your immune system, speeds up your body’s healing process, and helps it absorb iron more effectively.


#3 Eggs

Initially, the cost of wearing braces may include selective eating due to your teeth still adapting to the dental appliance. Fortunately, eggs are incredibly versatile foods, and you can prepare them in different ways. You can eat hard-boiled or fried eggs, though scrambled eggs with their softer consistency may be easier to chew.

A great source of protein eggs can be your substitute if biting and chewing on meat causes too much discomfort. They keep your immune system healthy since they contain vitamins A and B-12 and selenium. Lutein and zeaxanthin are also in eggs, which can help prevent macular degeneration and promote good vision.

#4 Ice Cream

Whether you got braces for your kids or yourself, a reward is in due order once the adjustment period is over. One way to do so is by eating a delicious treat such as ice cream. Not only is it tasty, but its cold temperature can act as a reliever for any swelling or inflammation that you may experience after getting braces.

However, it might not be ideal for you to eat this immediately after getting braces. They can irritate your mouth, which causes too much pressure and sensitivity. Also, be careful in choosing which type of ice cream you have. Stay away from hard ice creams, as well as ones with chunky ingredients, like almonds.

#5 Jello

Another treat that’s great for people getting orthodontic braces is jello. If you want to improve its flavour without affecting your teeth, you may add some whipped cream on top. However, some flavours may contain more food colouring than others. It might stain your braces and teeth, so choose your jello carefully.

#6 Oatmeal

One concern that may arise is whether or not you’re getting the right amount of nutrients with your new diet. Oatmeal is the answer. It’s both nourishing and extremely easy to prepare. You can eat it either as a breakfast or snack, as it is or with added ingredients. However, you need to make sure those additional items won’t cause any damage.

Oats are also highly nutritious and offer multiple health benefits for your body. They are rich in carbs and fibre but are also higher in fat and protein than other grains. They contain many antioxidants that can help reduce your blood pressure. Eating oats may also help in lowering your blood sugar levels and can assist in losing weight.

Foods You Should Avoid

To help protect both your braces and your teeth, you also need to avoid eating certain foods. Unfortunately, eating these can cause damage to the brackets, wires, and bands.

#1 Chewy Foods

Gnawing on chewy foods may be satisfying, but it can be hard to eat once you have braces on. Also, these may loosen their parts and impede their ability to straighten your teeth.

Avoid the following:

  • bagels

  • beef jerky

  • chewy rolls

  • hard bread

  • large pieces of meat

  • pizza crust

#2 Crunchy Foods

Although it may be fun to munch on crunchy foods, you’ll have to pause while you’re wearing braces. These can potentially bend the wires, loosen the bands, and even knock off the brackets. Additionally, some of these can get stuck, which can cause pain and lead to tooth decay if left untreated.

Avoid the following:

  • corn chips

  • crunchy tacos

  • nuts

  • pretzels

  • raw vegetables (ex. broccoli, carrots, and cauliflower)

#3 Hard Foods

It may not be a big deal to eat hard foods before, but that changes when you have braces. They can hurt your teeth, especially when the braces are newly installed or adjusted recently by your dentist. These can also damage your braces.

Avoid the following:

  • hard biscuits and cookies

  • hard candies (ex. candy canes, jawbreakers, lollipops)

  • peanut brittle

#4 Foods That Require the Use of Front Teeth

Though you generally use utensils to eat your food, some encourage you to bite into them with your teeth. However, doing so can damage your braces. When you get braces, avoid biting off more than you can chew.

Avoid the following:

  • chicken wings

  • corn on the cob

  • ribs

  • whole apples and pears

  • whole pickles

#5 Foods That Stain

Colour, whether it’s the palette in the restaurant or the food colouring used in your meal, has a psychological impact. Its intensity may lead you to have certain expectations in terms of flavour. However, these colours may also cause stains on your teeth and braces.

Avoid the following:

  • acidic drinks

  • berries

  • beets

  • grape juice

#6 Non-Food Items

Even if you don’t eat any of the foods, you might still damage your braces if you chew on non-food items. If you have a habit of gnawing on these, it may be time to stop.

Avoid the following:

  • ice cubes

  • fingernails

  • paper clips

  • pencils and pens

#7 Sticky Foods

Whether you’re wearing braces or Invisalign®, sticky foods are not great for your teeth. Avoid eating these since they can stick to your braces and likely damage them. If left untreated, they can increase your chances of experiencing tooth decay.

Avoid the following:

  • caramels

  • chewing gum

  • fruit roll-up

  • gummy candy

  • licorice

  • taffy

Caring for your braces also extends to the foods you consume. Being mindful of what you eat can help you prevent dental issues and straighten your smile in due time.

If you need dental appliances or guidance regarding their care, you can turn to Cosmo Dental Centre. We offer excellent orthodontic treatment that helps straighten your teeth. For inquiries, you can call us at (519) 659-2767 or email us at


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