The downfalls of having orthodontic treatment include wearing the dreaded wires and brackets, and all those food restrictions. Throughout your treatment course, you should avoid hard foods and sugary foods and beverages. Not only can these items damage braces, but they are also bad for your oral health. The mouth bacteria that cause decalcification, decay, cavities, and gingivitis feed on fermentable sugars and carbs. The longer leftover food debris and plague are allowed to linger in the mouth, the more bacteria and the higher likelihood of problems.
It is important to be aware of how certain food cause harm and either limit or avoid these items completely while undergoing orthodontic care.
Gooey items, candy or other sticky foods can damage or loosen brackets or get trapped beneath wires. It is best to avoid:
- Chewy candy such as taffy, gum, caramel, gummy candy and licorice
- Chewy bread items, such as bagels, soft bread sticks, and pizza crust
Wires can bend, and brackets become dislodged when eating hard foods while wearing braces. While undergoing orthodontic treatment, say away from:
- Apples, raw carrots, and other hard fruits and vegetables
- Crunchy chips or hard snacks
- Hard candies, cough drops and lozenges
- Hard slices of bread, such as crunchy breadsticks, pretzels (hard or soft) and French baguettes
Call your orthodontist immediately if you experience a loose or broken bracket or wire, to schedule a repair. Too many damaged orthodontic appliances and repairs can prolong your treatment time. If you are not sure of what food and beverages items you should be avoiding, avoid anything in question and contact your dental office.
Also refrain from bad oral habits like chewing on objects like ice or pencils, or nail-biting. It is a good idea to end these practices anyway, but especially important when undergoing orthodontic treatment.