Braces and Diet: What Not to Eat in the First Week


Beginning your journey with braces is a significant step towards enhancing your smile. However, as you start this new chapter, it’s important to be mindful of your diet, especially in the first week. You might be wondering, “Which foods should I avoid right now?”

During this initial adjustment period, it’s crucial to avoid certain foods that can cause discomfort or harm your braces. We’re here to offer a detailed guide on the best dietary choices for this phase. The guidance aims to ensure your comfort and safeguard your braces from any potential damage.

This change in your eating habits is only temporary, but it plays a vital role in achieving your desired results. Let’s explore some dietary recommendations that will make your first week with braces a smoother and more comfortable experience.

Why Braces Hurt the First Week

When you first get your braces, it’s common to experience some discomfort. It happens because your teeth are beginning to adjust to the new pressure applied by the braces. 

The wires and brackets might also irritate the inside of your mouth initially. This discomfort is a normal part of the process – it means your braces are working as they should, moving your teeth into their correct positions. 

To help with the soreness, you can use orthodontic wax to cover any sharp edges, and soft foods are your best friend during this time. Remember, this initial discomfort is temporary, and it’s a small step towards a big improvement in your smile.

Best Foods to Eat with New Braces

Adjusting to life with new braces means making some changes to your diet, but don’t worry – there are plenty of tasty and nutritious options that are brace-friendly.

Soft Fruits

Bananas, berries, and melons are excellent choices. They are soft, easy to chew, and packed with vitamins. You can also enjoy applesauce or pureed fruit if whole fruits feel too challenging.

Yogurt and Puddings

Yogurt and puddings are not only soft and soothing but also come in various flavors. They require no chewing and are a good source of calcium.

Mashed Potatoes and Soft Vegetables

Creamy mashed potatoes, steamed vegetables like carrots and broccoli, and butternut squash provide nutrients without straining your braces.

Read More: Soft Food For Braces: If You’re New to Braces

Scrambled Eggs and Soft Proteins

Scrambled eggs, tofu, and fish like salmon are soft protein sources that are easy on your braces. They are versatile and can be prepared in various ways to keep your meals interesting.

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What Not to Eat with Braces the First Week

The first week with braces is a critical time for adjusting your eating habits to protect your new appliance and ensure your comfort.

Hard Fruits and Vegetables

Hard fruits like apples and raw carrots can be damaging. Cut them into small pieces or opt for softer options. Steamed vegetables are a safer alternative.

Chewy Breads and Meats

Avoid chewy or crusty breads, as they can get stuck in your braces. Similarly, tough meats can be problematic. Opt for softer options like meatloaf or casseroles.

Sticky and Hard Sweets

Sticky sweets like caramel or toffee, as well as hard candies, can damage your braces. They can also increase the risk of cavities.

Crunchy Snacks

Snacks like popcorn, nuts, and chips can break brackets and wires. Soft snacks like cheese puffs or yogurt are safer choices.

Sugary and Acidic Drinks

Sugary and acidic drinks can increase the risk of tooth decay, especially with braces. Water, milk, or unsweetened tea are better for your oral health.

Read More: Can You Chew Gum with Braces?

Foods to Avoid Throughout Your Braces Treatment

As you embark on your braces journey, being mindful of what you eat is crucial for avoiding damage to your braces and ensuring effective treatment. Here are some specific foods to steer clear of:

Sticky and Chewy Foods

Candies like toffee or gum, and even seemingly harmless foods like dried fruit, can easily get stuck and dislodge braces.

Hard Foods

Crunchy snacks, nuts, and hard candies are notorious for breaking wires and brackets. Even healthy items like raw carrots should be eaten with caution.

Tough Meats and Bread

Tough meats, crusty bread, and chewy pizza crust can be hard to bite into and may damage braces. Opt for softer options like meatballs or tender chicken.

Corn on the Cob

It can dislodge braces. Instead, cut the corn off the cob before eating.

Sugary Foods and Drinks

These can increase the risk of cavities. With braces, it’s harder to clean teeth properly, making it important to limit sugary treats.

When to Expect to Eat Normally After Braces?

Adjusting to eating with braces takes a little time, but don’t worry, you’ll soon be able to enjoy most of your favorite foods again. Generally, within a few weeks, you’ll feel more comfortable and can start reintroducing various foods back into your diet. 

Start with softer foods and gradually move to harder ones as you feel comfortable. It’s essential to avoid particularly hard, sticky, or chewy foods that can damage your braces. 

As you adjust, you’ll learn which foods are safe and how to eat them without causing discomfort or damage to your braces. Patience is key – before you know it, eating with braces will feel almost normal!

Read More: Does Getting Braces Hurt?

How Long Will Braces Discomfort Last?

The initial discomfort from braces typically lasts for about a week or two. After each adjustment appointment, you might feel sore, but this usually subsides within a few days. 

It’s important to follow your orthodontist’s advice on care and maintenance to minimize discomfort. Using dental wax, taking over-the-counter pain relievers, and sticking to soft foods can help alleviate pain. 

Remember, any discomfort you experience is temporary and a part of the journey to achieving your perfect smile. Each day with braces gets easier, and the end result – a beautiful, straight smile – is absolutely worth it.

Common Braces Discomfort Relief Methods

Feeling some discomfort with braces is normal, but there are several effective ways to alleviate it:

Orthodontic Wax

This can be a lifesaver. Apply it to any part of your braces, causing irritation to your cheeks or lips.

Pain Relievers

Over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen can be helpful. Be sure to follow the recommended dosage.

Soft Foods Diet

After adjustment appointments, stick to soft foods like soups, yogurt, or mashed potatoes to ease discomfort.

Saltwater Rinses

Regular rinses with a saltwater solution can reduce soreness and prevent infections in irritated areas.

Cold Foods and Drinks

Cold items like ice cream or chilled smoothies can numb sore areas and provide relief.

Gentle Brushing

Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and be gentle around sore areas while keeping your teeth clean.

Join the Kumra Orthodontics Family!

Ready to take the next step towards a dazzling smile? At Kumra Orthodontics, we’re not just about braces; we’re about building confidence and transforming lives. 

Our team is committed to providing personalized care in a friendly and supportive environment. Whether you’re considering braces for yourself or a loved one, we’re here to guide you every step of the way. 

Don’t wait any longer to achieve the smile you’ve always dreamed of. Contact us today to schedule your consultation and become a part of the Kumra Orthodontics family. Your journey to a beautiful smile starts here!