After a trip to the orthodontist, you may find yourself with braces and no idea how to eat with them. Your initial days wearing braces can certainly feel like you are wearing training wheels on your teeth. So, what can you do to ensure that you are eating foods that won't damage your braces? How can you ease the pain? These tips will help you.
Soft Foods Are Your Friends
In the initial days, you will find that soft foods are a great choice to avoid discomfort and pain. These soft foods are likely to be beneficial in the first few days. Before your orthodontist appointment, stock up on yogurt, soup, soft meats (like shredded chicken), pasta, mashed potatoes, and rice.
Some Foods Should Always Be Avoided
There are also some hard foods you should avoid no matter where you are in your orthodontia journey. They could damage your orthodontia, leaving you with the need for additional dental appointments and potential pain.
These "no-no" foods include popcorn, ice chips, pizza crust, raw carrots, unsliced apples, corn on the cob, bagels, and nuts. Some foods are also off-limits not because they are hard but because they are sticky. These include licorice, caramel, and gum.
Manage Pain By Chopping Food
Smaller bites of food are better for your teeth and orthodontia. Smaller pieces of food, especially harder foods chopped down, are less likely to hurt your teeth and damage your braces. Items like corn on the cob can be cut down to kernels so that you can still enjoy them in a safe manner.
The goal of chopping your food smaller is to avoid having to use your front teeth. You aren't separating your food with your front teeth, you are merely using your back teeth to bite. Chew slowly and carefully to avoid brushing the surface of your braces with food, which could cause damage.
Warm Drinks Provide Comfort
It is also a good idea to provide your mouth with some relief. Warm tea is helpful for that, but you might also decide to rinse your teeth with warm water and salt. This can reduce inflammation and pain after eating, especially in those early days of wearing orthodontia.
Talk to Your Orthodontist
It is also a good idea to talk to an orthodontist if you have questions about eating with your braces. Your orthodontist can offer you some advice about eating without pain or damage to your braces.