Braces are secured onto your teeth with a strong adhesive that is activated by a bright light. This seal is not permanent — that is how we are able to take the braces off at the end of treatment! Unfortunately though, eating hard or sticky foods can damage the braces by knocking the brackets loose from your teeth, or by bending or breaking the wires. This type of breakage often occurs at inopportune times — maybe at a sleepover or during school — resulting in a brace or pokey wire that rubbing on the cheek which can be very uncomfortable.
What can be done to avoid this scenario?
It is important to think about what you are putting in your mouth before chomping down on your favorite food or snack. Hard foods (many of which can be good for you) should be either prepared differently than usual or altogether avoided. Here are some examples of foods to avoid:
Ribs (okay if you cut the meat off first)
Apples (okay if cut up into small slices)
Carrots (okay if cut into slivers)
Corn on the cob (okay if cut off the cob)
Hard rolls or bagels
Sticky foods are an absolute NO and include:
Gum with sugar
You get the idea! Be smart about what you choose to put in your mouth and avoid a problem before it happens. Remember, as soon as a bracket comes loose, that tooth is no longer moving in the proper direction. If enough time goes by before getting the braces fixed, you can lose a month of more in progress which means wearing your braces longer! If you aren’t sure if particular food is okay, ask us! Good luck!