What Kinds of Food Are Safe to Eat with Braces?

foods to eat with braces

Published by Dr. Charles Gemmi

A Board Certified Orthodontist and a Diplomate of the American Board of Orthodontics, Dr. Charles Gemmi has been a practicing orthodontist with Orthodontics Limited since 2000 and is a member of the teaching staff at Einstein Medical Center. Orthodontics Limited is a Diamond+ Provider of Invisalign in Philadelphia and Hatboro, PA.

When you first get your braces, you probably also got a long list of everything that you can’t eat. After glancing at the obvious “no gum, no sticky candy, no apples,” you might see items listed such as “crunchy” or other adjectives that leave you confused as to what you can eat. 

It can feel like you can’t eat anything when you have braces. There are simply too many restrictions, right? Instead of worrying about what you can’t eat, let’s take a look at the foods that are safe to eat with braces.

How to Eat with Braces

Eating with braces requires some new eating habits. You have to relearn the way you eat and this can be challenging in the beginning. 

When you first get braces, stick with softer foods that don’t require a ton of chewing. This will help you learn how to move your mouth and teeth in a new way without the risk of too much discomfort or even choking. It is likely that you will experience discomfort and pain for the first few weeks of eating with braces. This will be reduced over time, so stick with easy-to-eat foods until then. 

With braces, you won’t want to bite into things (or won’t be allowed to) like apples, burritos, or steak. Can you eat steak with braces? Things like steak are too tough for braces and can damage your braces. With foods that you can eat but require you to bite into, cut them into bite-sized pieces and chew them slowly. This will help you prevent damage to your braces. 

What Foods Can I Eat with Braces?

Knowing what you can eat when you have braces can make the whole experience a bit easier to manage. Even though you may have a long list of everything you can’t eat, you still have many options for the foods that you can eat. 

Soft Foods

As we mentioned before, soft foods are great to eat with braces. They won’t get stuck in your braces, they cause less pain to eat, and they aren’t likely to break or damage your braces. 

Look to foods like oatmeal, mashed potatoes, scrambled eggs, bananas, yogurt, and other soft foods. These are the best to eat when you first get your braces and your mouth is feeling extra tender. 

Soups

Of course, soups are incredibly easy to eat and many of them don’t require chewing. Soups that are mostly broth are perfect for when you first get braces. You can eat soups that have soft ingredients in them like potatoes or noodles. 

However, you should avoid any soups with crunchy and tough ingredients. Soups with steak or fresher vegetables should be avoided. Slowly incorporate different ingredients into your soups as you get used to having braces. 

Pastas

Pasta is another soft food that is super easy to eat with braces. Some forms of pasta don’t require much chewing as you can just swallow the noodles. There is a variety of pasta that are completely safe to eat from alfredo to spinach pesto to some forms of spaghetti. 

Be aware that some sauces that go with pasta are unsafe to eat. Spaghetti sauces that are heavy on meat or other vegetables may be too difficult to eat. Some sauces have crunchy ingredients that can damage your braces. Be cautious of the sauces you add or buy so you don’t damage your braces. 

Sandwiches With Soft Bread

As you get more comfortable with your braces and the level of discomfort in your mouth diminishes, you can start eating sandwiches. Many kinds of sandwiches are soft enough to be safe to eat while having braces. 

You won’t be able to toast the bread for your sandwiches, but you can still enjoy many of your favorite sandwiches without toasted bread. Be aware of tough ingredients in your sandwiches. For example, you will want to avoid Philly Cheesesteak sandwiches due to the tough steak pieces. 

Foods to Avoid with Braces

Of course, we must remind you of some of the foods that you should not be eating with braces. Sadly, there is a long list of foods that can damage and break braces. We have already covered how apples, steak, and other tough foods, however, there are others that we should mention.

First, there are some foods you may want to avoid at the beginning of having braces, but that you can eat later on. These foods can be harsh on your mouth while it is still tender. When you are facing a lot of discomfort, avoid ice cream, spicy foods, citrus, and some chewy bread. You can eat these foods once your mouth gets used to having braces.

The foods that you should completely ban while wearing braces include hard or sticky candy, nuts, popcorn, pizza crust, toasted bread, corn on the cob, crunchy vegetables, and chips. You thought it hurt to get a piece of popcorn or a chip stuck in your gums before you had braces, it’s way worse when you have braces. 

Don’t eat the banned foods while you have braces, otherwise, you risk breaking brackets and snapping bands. This can require an emergency visit where your orthodontist will know why they are having to replace some brackets. 

Take Care of Your Body and Your Braces

Eat the right kinds of foods so you can nourish your body while avoiding problems with your braces. The better you take care of your braces, the more your orthodontist will be grateful. 

Need to find an orthodontist who will care about you and your teeth? Go to Orthodontics Limited. The Orthodontists here will put your dental health as the top priority so you can have a smile that you love. Of course, you need to put the work into having a smile you love. 

Orthodontics Limited is ready to give you braces and teach you everything you need to know about taking care of them so your smile can be the one you want. 

 

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