Protect Your Braces with These Do's & Don'ts

The Wrong Foods Can Ruin Your Braces & All Your Progress

We know you’re probably already dreaming of eating your favorite candy or chewing gum again, and it won’t be long until you can!

But right now, it’s important to know what foods can get stuck in or damage your braces.

Being mindful of what you eat will ensure you will not have uncesssary breakage and your treament will progress on time.

Foods To Avoid With Braces

Little girl with sun glasses blowing up pink chewing gum against a light purple background

(like chewing gum)

Woman hold bowl with different nuts. Healthy eating

(like peanuts or hard candy)

Potato chips in open bag, delicious BBQ seasoning spicy for crips, thin slice deep fried snack fast food.

Extra Crunchy
(like ice, popcorn, or chips)

Hand made caramel toffee pieces with sea salt

(like caramel)

Close up portrait of a hungry girl biting an apple

Tough to bite into
(apples, corn on the cob)

There are plenty of foods that are OK to eat with braces as long as you chop them into bite-sized pieces, too. If you’re unsure about your favorite food, ask your orthodontist.

Loose Teeth

If your teeth feel looser after getting braces, don’t worry!

It’s not just your imagination-your braces are designed to loosen up teeth so they can move them into the right place more easily. Once your teeth are positioned where they need to go, they won’t feel loose anymore.

Loose Wires & Bands

The wires and bands on your braces may come loose. If this happens, please contact us as soon as possible so that we can check and repair your appliance. Be sure to save any broken pieces and bring them to the office with you.

In the case of a loose wire, you may be able to gently push it back into place with something soft, like a clean pencil eraser. If the loose wire is poking into your gums, cheeks, or lips, use a piece of wax to cover the broken end and reduce the irritation.

If anything breaks or feels out of place with your braces, call our office.

Soreness from Braces

Soreness and discomfort are normal after first getting your braces or after an adjustment. But we promise you won’t be sore forever!

Tooth & Jaw Pain

If you’re experiencing soreness:

  • Swish around some slightly-warm salt water for 1-2 minutes
  • Take a low dose of pain reliever

Tongue & Cheek Pain

It’s also normal for your tongue, lips, or cheeks to be irritated as they adjust to the braces.

If you find that your braces are poking or scraping the soft parts of your mouth:

  • Swishing salt water helps this too
  • Put a small piece of wax on the metal where it touches any sensitive areas

Let us know if you’re experiencing any pain or discomfort with your braces, and we will provide you with the best help we can.

Happy Girl
Young Girl With Braces Posing

Take Care of Your Braces

Your treatment plan was designed just for you, so make sure to follow your doctor’s instructions.

Cleaning your braces and avoiding damaging foods or activities is the shortest path to your new smile.

Playing Sports with Braces

We recommend using a mouthguard for any sports or activities where there’s a chance of contact or damage to your mouth. Our staff is happy to help you find the right mouthguard for your needs.

Braces don’t have to keep you away from the sports and activities you enjoy, but it’s important to keep your mouth and braces safe while you play.

If you do have a sports emergency or injury, check your mouth and appliances right away for damage. If there has been damage, such as loose teeth or broken wires, call our office right away and we will get you in for repairs as soon as possible.

In the meantime, you can swish salt water or apply wax to the damaged area to help relieve any pain.

Brushing & Flossing

Daily dental care is your best tool for keeping your teeth healthy while you have braces.

Make sure to floss and brush after every meal. Pay special attention to the areas around your brackets, retainer, or other appliances. Electric toothbrushes are OK, so long as the bristles are soft.

If you’re not sure what toothbrush, toothpaste, floss, or other cleaning tools to choose, our team is happy to help you find the best products for you.

Flossing With Braces

Flossing with braces can be a little tricky at first, but you’ll get the hang of it in no time.

  • Thread the floss behind your brace wire and between your teeth
  • Use a floss threader or special orthodontic floss to help you
  • Wrap the floss gentle around your pointer finger on each hand
  • Pull the floss tight, then slide back and forth between your teeth
  • Make sure to reach up to the gum line on both sides of each tooth

If flossing isn’t removing all of the food particles around your teeth and braces, or if you find that your gums are extra sensitive to flossing, ask us about a water flosser.

How To Care For Teeth With Braces

How To Care For Teeth With Braces

How To Floss with a Glued In Retainer

How To Floss with a Glued In Retainer