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Foods to Avoid
Raleigh, NC

Teenage girl eating an orange sliceHave you recently undergone a procedure for orthodontics? Your doctor might have advised you to avoid certain foods and practice specific aftercare techniques. Following these instructions is essential for the maintenance of your braces.

At Raleigh Family Orthodontics, Dr. Lee and Dr. Neill can provide you with a consultation and help you through the aftercare, advising you on all the foods to avoid after your orthodontics procedure.

Foods to Avoid for Orthodontic Patients

Certain foods are better than others, especially if you recently underwent an orthodontics procedure. An orthodontist usually advises you to avoid certain foods that may damage your braces. These include:

•  Hard and crunchy foods and vegetables
•  Sticky and chewy foods or items that you need to chew or break with your teeth
•  Sugary foods and acidic drinks

Why Certain Foods Should be Avoided

Certain foods must be avoided if you have recently gotten braces. This is because tough, hard-to-eat, or acidic foods may either break your braces or stain and damage them over time. By being mindful of your diet, you can easily avoid damaging your braces in the long run or breaking your wires.

Hard and Crunchy Foods

Hard and crunchy foods are the worst enemies for brackets, wires, and teeth underneath the braces. It is important to avoid hard candies, nuts, crunchy chips, popcorn, and even chewing on ice.

While fruits and vegetables are healthier options, you must still be careful and avoid crunchy apples, carrots, and other crunchy foods. If you can't avoid these items, consider cutting them up into manageable bites instead of biting into them whole.

Sticky and Chewy Foods

Some sticky and chewy foods, such as chewing gum, caramel, taffy, and gummy snacks, can get stuck in your braces. This can be extremely hard to remove and can often cause your wires or brackets to break.

You must avoid excessively chewing on items such as pens, your fingernails, ice, hard bread such as baguettes, and even tough meats that are hard to chew (this includes jerky). If you want your braces to last longer, note these common foods to avoid.

Sugary and Acidic Foods

Another common culprit is sugar. Sugar in any form can wreak havoc on your braces and the underlying teeth. It is often the number one cause of tooth decay. The more sugary foods and beverages you consume, the more gum problems you may face.

You must also avoid acidic foods and drinks, such as citrus fruits, juices, and vinegar-based salad dressings. This doesn't mean you quit them altogether. However, it is best to use them sparingly.

Foods That Stain or Discolor Braces

Last but not least, are the carbonated drinks or acidic foods that may discolor your teeth or braces. Avoid them at all costs, as they aren't good for your oral health anyway.

Tips for Orthodontic-Friendly Eating

It is quite easy to support your orthodontics if you follow your orthodontist's advice. Some of the most important tips for orthodontic-friendly eating include:

•  Practice proper oral hygiene: You must remember to brush and floss regularly and clean your braces, especially after consuming one of the food items listed above.
•  Consult your orthodontist: In case a bracket or wire comes loose, it is important to consult your orthodontist as soon as possible.
•  Eat softer foods: Opt for a softer diet that is easy to chew and unlikely to damage your braces. You can boil your favorite fruits or veggies, consume soups and smoothies, and swap some items for softer foods unless unavoidable.
•  Choose lean proteins: You may prefer tougher meats, but switching to leaner protein sources is advisable after an orthodontic procedure. This includes tender chicken, fish, or tofu.
•  Consider softer carb options: You can benefit from switching to softer grains such as rice, pasta, or oatmeal as opposed to chewy pizza crusts or harder breads.
•  Water: Consume a lot of water as it is the best beverage for your oral health. It can rinse away food that may have gotten caught in your braces and prevent a dry mouth, which can cause trouble for people with braces.
•  Ask your orthodontist for advice: It is important to refer to your orthodontist for specific guidelines that can help you maintain proper oral hygiene.


Reading up on some frequently asked questions can help you understand concerns relating to braces. Some common FAQs include:

Can I Eat Popcorn with Braces?

It is important to evaluate the foods you consume, especially if you have recently undergone an orthodontics procedure. Popcorn is one of the foods you are better off avoiding. This is because the kernels can easily get lodged in your braces or teeth, which can cause discomfort or damage your braces.

Is it Okay to Have Chewy Candy While Wearing Braces?

Chewy candy is another food that can cause damage to the wiring or brackets of your braces. This isn't just because it is chewy but also because it is extremely hard to clean out. Over time, food lodged into your braces can damage your teeth and cause cavities.

Are There Any Foods I Can't Eat During Invisalign Treatment?

Although Invisalign aligners are removable, it is still important for you to avoid foods that could damage your aligners and thus hinder your treatment from progressing the way it is meant to. Sticky candy, chewing gum, or hard foods can damage your aligners if you don't remove them before eating.

Always remember to remove your aligners and thoroughly brush your teeth before putting them back on, especially if you eat something that may stick to your teeth.

How Can I Clean My Teeth Properly While Wearing Braces?

You need to maintain proper oral hygiene while wearing braces. Use soft-bristled toothbrushes and fluoride toothpaste to gently clean your braces and teeth. You can also invest in special toothbrushes and flosses for braces so that you can get under the wires and clean your teeth thoroughly.

Are There Any Foods That Can Actually Help During Orthodontic Treatment?

You can consume softer foods like yogurt, lean meats, boiled vegetables, and soft fruits to go easy on your braces and teeth. Moreover, the more water you drink, the better your oral hygiene.

Visit Us for Your First Orthodontist Appointment

Following your orthodontist's guidelines is important if you have opted for braces. At Raleigh Family Orthodontics, we guide our patients from day one. We can provide a consultation and help you take care of your braces throughout your treatment. Call (984) 254-0585 for your first consultation.
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Foods to Avoid • Raleigh Family Ortho
Maintain your braces with care! Learn which foods to avoid after orthodontic procedures at Raleigh Family Orthodontics. Call (984) 254-0585 for guidance today!
Raleigh Family Orthodontics, 9201 Leesville Rd STE 160, Raleigh, NC 27613 : (984) 254-0585 : : 6/11/2024 : Page Phrases: orthodontist RALEIGH NC :