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At your orthodontic facility, the orthodontist will give you a list of foods that you are permitted to eat while undergoing treatment. In addition, there are foods that you must avoid to protect the delicate wires and brackets that are straightening your teeth. In many cases, the foods that you cannot eat while undergoing orthodontic treatment are also unhealthy foods that provide few minerals or vitamins.
Foods to Avoid During Orthodontic Treatment
Foods that are hard or sticky can damage metal wires and brackets, leading to an emergency visit to an orthodontic facility and a disruption of your treatment plan. To protect the brackets and wires, stay away from these foods:
- Nuts – almonds, walnuts or pecans
- Popcorn – plain or drizzled with caramel
- Taffy – any flavor
- Seeds – sesame seeds
- Hard breads – bagels or hard rolls
- Hard candy – any flavor
- Pretzels – any shape
- Corn chips – any flavor
- Raw hard vegetables – carrots or celery
- Corn on the cob – cut the kernels off first
In addition, you should never chew gum or chomp on ice cubes. If you want to eat fresh fruit, then slice it into thin pieces and use caution while chewing. There are still numerous foods that you can eat, including soft fresh and cooked vegetables. While you might think that your diet is restrictive during orthodontic treatment, it isn’t. This is a good time to learn how to cook delicious and nutritious meals to avoid recipes that include hard taco shells or thick pizza crusts.
Cut Meat Into Small Pieces
You can continue to eat protein foods such as chicken, pork, beef, and fish, but make sure to cut the meat into small sections to remove the fat or bones that can damage metallic or ceramic brackets and thin delicate wires. Avoid chewing on chicken wings or drumsticks because it can dislodge the brackets from the surfaces of your teeth. Learn how to cook several recipes that contain soft foods such as cooked pasta, rice, and mashed potatoes. You might want to buy a slow cooker in order to prepare meals that have tender meat and vegetables.
Choose Foods That Do Not Contain Artificial Dyes
If you have metal wires or brackets, then you may need to consume low-acid foods and beverages to avoid damaging the materials. Some of the foods that are high in acids include:
- Citrus fruits and juices
- Tomatoes and tomato products
In addition, you should avoid dark beverages and foods that can discolor ceramic braces. These foods include blueberries, chocolate, and coffee. When you are selecting foods at the grocery store, make sure to read the labels to determine if a manufacturer has added artificial dyes that can ruin the appearance of orthodontic devices.
Avoid Sugary Food
It is never a good idea to consume a lot of sugar, and this means that you should avoid soft drinks that have no nutritional value. In most cases, sport or energy drinks also contain several teaspoons of sugar in addition to artificial dyes and flavors that are bad for your gums and teeth. While foods such as doughnuts, pastries, and cake are soft and easy to chew, these items contain sugar and white flour that will stick to your teeth, wires, and brackets.
Unhealthy Foods Stick To Your Teeth and Gums
If you consume unhealthy foods, then you will notice right away that you have less energy, and you will see a buildup of food debris on your teeth. Junk foods tend to stick to the bottom portion of your teeth or between your teeth, and it is difficult to remove the particles. You may notice that you have halitosis or a bad taste in your mouth because it is difficult to brush away the food particles. When you visit an orthodontist, they will also know that you are not consuming the right types of foods because there is a buildup of tartar underneath the wires and brackets.
Grocery Shop With a List of Acceptable Foods
In addition to having a list of foods that you cannot eat, you should create a list of foods that you can buy at the supermarket to cook tasty meals and snacks. Instead of buying bags of chips or microwave popcorn for snacks, look for fresh bananas or canned fruit that is packed in its own juice. When you are preparing a lunch for work or school, pack single servings of applesauce, leafy green salads and whole-wheat sandwiches with soft lunchmeat. For breakfast, you can cook scrambled or boiled eggs, and it is acceptable to eat bacon, sausage or ham when it is cut into small sections. At dinner, bake casseroles in the oven or have foods cooking all day inside a slow cooker.
Schedule an Appointment at McDermott Orthodontics
If you live in Minnesota, then you can schedule an appointment at McDermott Orthodontics. Dr. Michael McDermott has been offering personalized orthodontic treatments to children, teenagers, and adults for over 15 years. Patients who visit McDermott Orthodontics receive a free consultation to discuss their treatment options that might include:
• Metallic braces
• Invisalign aligners for teenagers or adults
• Ceramic brackets and clear wires
Invisalign aligners are appropriate for teenage or adult patients who have mild malocclusions. McDermott Orthodontics offers treatments to patients in four locations:
• Brainerd – 218-829-1630
• Pequot Lakes – 218 -568-5600
• Delano – 763-972-4444
• Baxter -218-829-1630
Call McDermott Orthodontics today to schedule your first appointment.
708 Elm Ave. E.
Foods To Avoid While Wearing Braces
Dr. Michael McDermott earned his Bachelor of Arts Degree in both Chemistry and Biology from St. Olaf College in Northfield, MN. He followed his undergraduate degrees with a doctorate in dental surgery at the University of Minnesota, where he graduated with highest distinction.
Dr. Mike then furthered his dental education by earning a masters and certificate in Orthodontics at the University of St. Louis in Missouri.