Foods you can and can’t eat with braces

Getting braces is an extremely exciting time but adjusting to the changes associated with wearing your appliance can be difficult. Braces are only effective when you care for them properly, which means some types of food should be avoided throughout the duration of your treatment. This will help you achieve the best results in the shortest time possible.

Eating the wrong foods can cause some discomfort and put you at risk of breaking your brackets or wires which will require unscheduled trips to your orthodontist and may increase your treatment time.

Additionally, if you frequently eat foods that can get stuck in your braces or are high in sugar content you will create an environment that encourages plaque and bacteria to thrive which may cause lasting damage to your teeth.

The best foods to eat with braces are low in sugar and do not require excessive chewing. This includes…

  • Bread
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Soup
  • Cheese
  • Pancakes
  • Puddings
  • Rice
  • Pasta

It’s normal to feel some discomfort during the first week of getting braces as your mouth adjusts to the new appliance. During this time, you should eat soft foods such as yoghurt, boiled vegetables, stewed fruit and thin soups to avoid putting additional pressure on your brackets.

Anyone who wears fixed braces should avoid excessive snacking and should aim to eat a healthy and balanced diet. Foods to avoid with braces include…

  • Chewy foods such as hard rolls and liquorice
  • Crunchy foods such as chips and popcorn
  • Sticky foods such as caramel, bubble gum and snickers
  • Hard food such as nuts and pretzels
  • Sugary foods such as lollies
  • Foods that you need to bite into forcefully such as apples, raw carrots and corn

braces and food

Yes, you can eat chocolate with braces. However, this must be done in moderation, due to the high sugar content of chocolate. When you can, try to reach for dark chocolate, instead of milk chocolate varieties.

Pizza lovers can still enjoy their favourite food. But they should be careful when eating the crust because it requires a lot of chewing which is not good for your braces.

Whether you like hot potato chips or thin crisps from the packet, you don’t have to give up chips when you get braces.

Orthodontic wax is non-toxic and safe for consumption. It’s made for you to put in your mouth so you can definitely eat while it is applied.

Regardless of what types of foods you eat with braces, it is important to keep the crevices between the teeth and around the braces very clean. That means brushing and flossing after meals to prevent the build-up of plaque and decay. Not only can failing to do so damage the teeth and gums, but it can also cause discolouration which can last a lifetime.

If you’re wanting to ensure the best results from your orthodontic treatment it is very important that you follow the advice about safe foods for braces that is set out above and ask your orthodontist if you have any questions about your specific treatment.

Foods you can and can’t eat with braces

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greenj says:

Thanks this helps and I just got braces yesterday so they still hurt

skyethewolf says:

this helps alot cause im gonna get braces soon and i need to know what i can eat and what i can't eat!

Don Schuldes says:

I just got my braces on, and I’m terrified of breaking a bracket. What are the chances of breaking a bracket even when obeying all the food rules?

Orthodontics Australia says:

Hi Don. It is very difficult to actually break a bracket, but they may become dislodged from the tooth, requiring a quick appointment with your orthodontist to reattach them. If you're following the food rules and all of your orthodontist's advice, the chances of this happening are very small. However, depending on your habits it may still happen from time to time. Be sure to be gentle when flossing and brushing so you're not putting to much stress on your brackets. It can also help to take smaller bites or cut your food into bite-sized pieces to avoid the brackets as much as possible while eating.

Scaredforaplate says:

I've been scared for my life getting a plate and I had no idea what foods I could eat and then you guys came to help.
Thanks so much
Aiden Holmes

Annamarie Farah says:

Hi, I just got my braces yesterday and I was just wondering if we could eat meat because sometimes meat is chewy (especially steak)? Thank you, this was very helpful.

Orthodontics Australia says:

Hi Annamarie, Yes you can still eat steak, however your teeth may be a bit tender after you first get your braces on (this goes away after a day or two as you adjust to the feeling in your mouth). We recommend cutting your steak into smaller bites that are easier to chew and brushing your teeth / flossing after your meal. Thanks!

Abs says:

This really helps!
But could I still eat ANZAC biscuits and kinda chewy biscuits like that?

Orthodontics Australia says:

That should be fine as long as you're careful and take small bites. You'll want to avoid things like hard caramels that can dislodge your brackets.

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