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Foods to Avoid When You Have Braces

Orthodontic braces offer one of the most effective and time-tested methods of straightening teeth and correcting bite issues available. With that in mind, it’s important to remember that, even with some of the more advanced types of braces, you will need to avoid certain foods that may compromise their mechanics and even increase risks to the health of your teeth. Some foods can also get caught between brackets and wires and be difficult to remove, making for an irritating and uncomfortable situation. These food restrictions are only temporary, lasting for the duration of your treatment. During your initial consultation, our board-certified orthodontist, Chris Murphy, DDS, will go over all of the foods you may need to limit (or stay away from entirely) and talk more with you about your options.

Below, you will find a quick guide outlining foods to avoid with braces. These items typically involve sticky, chewy, or hard substances that can cause serious problems with metal, clear, or ceramic brackets and increase the chances of cavities and decay. By staying away from the problem foods, you can go a long way toward protecting your braces (and your teeth) and maximizing your potential for a healthy and beautiful new smile!

Please avoid eating/chewing:

  • Popcorn
  • Nuts
  • Gooey chocolate
  • Peanut butter (both creamy and chunky varieties)
  • Gum
  • Beef jerky
  • Caramel
  • Taffy
  • Foods high in acid
  • Hard candy or hard cookies
  • Gummy candies (like gummy bears)

Soda and drinks that are high in sugar should also be avoided as they can increase the risk of cavities.

Please utilize caution with foods such as:

  • Apples
  • Carrots
  • Celery
  • Chewy bread (such as rolls and bagels)
  • Bread with a hard crust
  • Chips
  • Pretzels
  • Chicken wings
  • Corn on the cob

If you have questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us today!

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