Foods To Avoid With Braces

You are the proud owner of a new set of shiny metal braces, or ceramic clear braces. So exciting, right? In no time at all you will be showing off your perfectly straight set of teeth and a new dazzling smile. At Utah Orthodontics, we’re proud to be able to furnish teens and adults across the Salt Lake City region with high-quality, affordable braces. We are as excited as you about that beautiful new smile! However, we also want you to take great care of your braces while you have them on, and that means steering clear of certain foods that could cause all types of problems for your braces and your teeth. Whether you’re receiving braces treatment at our Sugar House office in Salt Lake City, or another office location throughout the Salt Lake area, our staff wants to warn you of a few foods to avoid.

What Should I Not Eat With Braces?

As much as we hate cutting you off from some of these delicious treats, they pose a serious threat to your brackets and wires. Just think of how much better they will taste when you’re eating them with a straight, braces-free smile! For now, stay away from:

  • Hard Candy

Not only will you have to resist the urge to bite into hard candy, instead of just sucking on it, the sugar in most hard candies is not good for your braces-covered teeth.

  • Beef Jerky

Eating jerky forces you to tear into this rubbery treat which is a bad idea for braces wearers.

  • Taffy, caramels and other sticky candy

We know how popular taffy is in Salt Lake City, but avoid it and other sticky candy at all costs.These can engulf your brackets and pull them away from your teeth. At the very least, sticky candies can wedge themselves under your braces where they’re hard to remove and slowly decay your teeth.

  • Ice

Many of our Orem and Riverton teens and adult braces wearers are used to being able to crunch up ice cubes. This habit must go when you get braces. Ice is so hard that it can break off your wires and even displace a brace from your teeth.

  • Pizza Crust

Similar to beef jerky, these types of bread are difficult to chew and put extra strain on your braces. Cut pizza crust and bagels into small pieces and chew carefully.

  • Popcorn

You might think of this snack as light, fluffy and harmless. You wouldn’t be wrong. However, the light puffy part of the corn is usually accompanied by the hulls of the corn seed and that can easily get caught in all parts of your braces appliance. If you can find popcorn without the hulls, go for it. If not, avoid popcorn while you have your braces.

  • Nuts & Seeds

Nuts can also damage braces and wires because they are crunchy and can get caught between the wires and your back teeth.

  • Gum

Chewing gum can be a hard habit to break, but gum might get stuck in between your braces and wires. Even your toothbrush might not scrub it away and you are left with trying to pick it out with your fingers or tweezers.

  • Corn chips, hard taco shells, and hard pretzels

Both corn chips and hard pretzels can pop off  your brackets and they can break off and get stuck between your wires and teeth or in between your molars. If you can, wait until you have your braces removed before you indulge in your next Dorito or pretzel.

  • Hard cookies or crackers

Again the hardness of the cookie should dictate whether you can or cannot eat it with braces on. If it doesn’t bend, skip it.

  • Corn on the cob

Corn cut off the cob is great; corn on the cob is not. At best, your braces will be full of the corn you bite into; at worst biting into the cob may cause your braces to come loose or dislodge.

  • Apples

Biting into an apple can pose huge problems for people with braces. If you want to enjoy an apple, cut it up first.

Take Special Care With These Foods

Your Utah Orthodontic Care staff also warns all patients in Roy and Layton to avoid biting into hard foods with your front teeth. Fruits, raw veggies, hard breads, and other hard foods should be cut or broken up before you try to eat them. When possible, cut up these hard foods into smaller pieces:

  • Raw vegetables
  • Croutons
  • French/Italian bread
  • Fruit
  • Hard rolls
  • Thin crust pizza
  • Meat
  • Burgers
  • Sub sandwiches

Perfect Braces-Friendly Snacks

By now you are probably thinking there are no foods left in the state of Utah for you to enjoy during your braces treatment. Not true. There are still many delicious food options; some of our soft, flavorful snack options include:

  • Yogurt
  • Cheese
  • Peanut Butter & Jelly
  • Mac & Cheese
  • Hulless popcorn
  • Bananas, grapes, oranges, strawberries, and other fruits without pits
  • Light crackers or cookies
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Ravioli, spaghetti, macaroni and cheese, and other noodle dishes


Contact Utah Orthodontic Care For All Of Your Questions!

Having your new, affordable braces is the perfect time to begin eating more healthy foods, if you are not already. Maintaining a healthy, nutritious diet is as important for oral health as it is for overall health. The healthier your body is, the better the results of your orthodontic treatment because a proper diet provides essential nutrients to bones and tissues undergoing significant change during braces treatment. It is always essential to maintain a nutritious diet to keep your teeth healthy throughout your orthodontic treatment. If you have any questions about what foods to eat, or other tips for life with braces, we encourage you to call your nearest Utah Orthodontic Care location at (801) 999-4431. You can also contact us using our the convenient form on our contact page. If you’re thinking about getting braces, call us today for your free consultation. We offer orthodontic financing and low monthly payments to make getting braces more affordable than ever!