Orthodontics LA

The Bite-Sized Guide to Surviving Braces: Eating

Posted on November 14, 2017

You did it! You now have braces and are on your way to having a set of beautiful, straight teeth. While this is an exciting time for you, we know how uncomfortable your teeth can get. Trust us; it’s only temporary.

One of the primary concerns our patients have is how to eat with braces.  It can be uncomfortable, as your teeth are shifting and changing during the treatment period. When you first get your braces on or after you get them tightened, it might feel too painful to even think about eating.

Obviously, it’s important to maintain a healthy diet while you have braces on. So we decided to compile a few tips to make it easier for you!

1. Eat slowly

For the time being, you’ll want to avoid biting off more than you can chew or attempting to inhale your food.

Actually, that’s good life advice. You shouldn’t do that anyway.

Taking careful bites and chewing slowly is the best way to prevent damaging the brackets and hurting your teeth. It only takes one wrong bite to damage your brackets.

2. Use a Fork & Knife

Make your parents proud, and whip out the fork and knife for every meal.
Yes, even pizza.

Using the proper utensils when you eat helps significantly. When you get your braces, we highly recommend cutting your food into small pieces. As you’re getting used to having the metal wires in your mouth, it is essential that you chew slowly and carefully.

3. Bite with your side teeth

When you first get your braces in, there is a lot of pressure on your front teeth. Literally. And this pressure will cause discomfort on those teeth for a while.

Take bites of food with your side teeth. You’ll get used to it over time, and you’ll be happy to know that there won’t be food plastered onto your front brackets.

4. Choose softer foods

Don’t worry, this is not a goodbye. It’s just “see you later”.

For now, you’ll have to stay away from those hard, difficult to chew foods. This means temporarily avoiding nuts, seeds, and popcorn. And as much as we hate to say it… steak. Gasp!

Some softer foods that you can eat instead are pudding, soft cheeses, muffins, soft-cooked chicken, and fish.

5. Treat Yourself

To some cold treats! When you first get your braces, you might find comfort in treats like ice cream, popsicles, or frozen yogurt. The cool temperature of these foods will ease the discomfort that you might be feeling. Of course, be sure to brush properly after eating!

When it comes to eating with braces, the struggle is real. It’s important to choose your foods wisely and make sure that you are not risking damage to your brackets or teeth.