Healthy Eating with Braces
Tips for Healthy Eating with Braces
Orthodontics correct misalignment and restore your teeth to optimal position or placement. Of course, when wearing braces, a healthy diet becomes more important than ever so that you can maintain a high level of oral health. In addition, certain foods can damage your braces/orthodontics and will need to be avoided. Fortunately, there a number of steps you can take to enjoy a delicious, healthy diet and still protect your braces. Below, your orthodontist, Dr. David Alpan, who conveniently practices in Los Angeles and Century City discusses what foods to avoid and offer tips on eating healthy with braces.
Foods to Avoid
Food will occasionally become stuck in your braces/orthodontics, which is why eating healthy is very important. When foods high in sugars and other starches become stuck in your teeth, bacteria break down the sugars and increase oral acidity. Over time, this leaves your teeth vulnerable to tooth decay. Sticky foods, such as jelly beans, fruit snacks or roll-ups, candies that contain caramel (like Snickers), or other candies, should be avoided. Hard foods, such as popcorn, whole apples, nuts, crunchy granola bars, or ice, may actually lead to broken wires or brackets. Even foods that you wouldn’t think to be problematic, like pizza crust or bagels, can cause issues with your braces.
Meal Ideas for Orthodontics Wearers
- Breakfast: To start your day, try oatmeal, Malt-o-Meal, or other hot cereal. Mix in fresh fruit, a spoonful of smooth peanut butter, or even a few dark chocolate chips to make it a tasty treat. Some people enjoy a smoothie made with milk, yogurt, and fresh fruit. Pancakes and eggs also provide healthy breakfast options.
- Lunches: After first receiving your braces and following each adjustment, you feel a little soreness. Fortunately, there are a number of options for soft and healthy lunches. Many patients enjoy casseroles, pasta dishes, pasta salads, and soup. You could also choose macaroni and cheese or a chicken wrap.
- Dinner: For dinner, many people choose recipes that involve a slow cooker. This allows chicken, fish, and beef to be softened and marinated, providing an easy to eat, and flavorful, meal. Meatballs and meatloaves are another very popular dinner choice for people wearing orthodontics. As with lunch, pastas, casseroles, and salads offer healthy alternatives that are comfortable on your teeth and gums.
- Snacks: While avoiding candy and popcorn may seem limiting, there are actually a number of convenient snack options for people wearing braces. Fresh fruit and vegetables can be cut into small slices and eaten with dip. You can also try cheese sticks and healthy yogurt. If you just can’t say no to your sweet tooth, all types of chocolate (without nuts or sticky add-ins like caramel) are a satisfying treat that can wash away from your teeth relatively easily.
Schedule an Appointment with Your Los Angeles Orthodontist
Do you have questions about eating healthy with braces? Dr. Alpan will be happy to address any questions or concerns you may have. You can schedule a consultation at one of our three convenient office locations by calling our Los Angeles office at (213) 382-8228, or our Century City office at (310) 888-0066. We proudly serve individuals and families throughout the Los Angeles and Century City areas, including the zip codes of 90057, 90067, and surrounding communities.