Meeting with an orthodontist is the first step to achieving a beautiful smile you can feel confident in. Rollins & Petersen Orthodontics in Arizona offers three types of braces to help you find that smile: metal braces, ceramic braces, and clear aligners. If you’re considering braces or are new to wearing braces, you may be curious about what changes you’ll need to make in your daily routines. We recommend a consultation with our professionals at one of our five Arizona locations to help you best understand life with braces.
Oral Hygiene When Wearing Braces
Good oral hygiene while wearing braces is necessary for achieving the best results. It is important to brush your teeth after every meal and after sugary snacks between meals. We recommend using an interproximal brush, as it is designed to clean between your teeth and around your braces. For the most thorough cleaning, you should also floss once a day using a floss threader. When you’re done cleaning your teeth, be sure to rinse them with water. Sometimes a specialized rinse will be recommended rather than water. Beyond hygiene, it is very important to pay attention to what you are eating.
Stay Away From These Foods
Even the best orthodontic care can be hindered by certain foods. As a result, it is important to avoid foods that fall into the following categories: chewy, crunchy, sticky, hard, and foods that you bite into. Many of the foods to avoid will fall into more than one of these categories. Below is a list of some foods to avoid:
- Ice cubes
- Gummy candy
- Fruit rolls
- Hard candy
- Whole fruits or vegetables such as apples, carrots, or corn on the cob
It is also best to abstain from indulging in excessively sugary foods regularly, as a diet high in sugar can lead to tooth decay.
I Don’t Know If I Can Avoid All These Foods!
No need to worry! If you see some of your favorite foods on this list, you can still find ways to consume many of them. For fruits, try them as a puree, in a sauce form, or as a juice. If you prefer your fruits raw, you can cut them into bite-sized pieces to protect your braces. Similarly, veggies can be cut into bite-sized pieces or steamed so they are softer. If you love corn, just remove the kernels from the cob. Other hacks include dipping hard cookies or biscuits in milk to soften them, running nuts through a food processor to include them in your meals, and sucking on ice cubes rather than chewing on them. If you absolutely have to have hard candies, stick to ones you can suck on and remember to rinse your teeth afterward.
If you have habits such as chewing on the end of your pens, biting your fingernails, and using your teeth to open things, try your best to curb these behaviors. Chewing on plastic or other hard non-food materials can put your orthodontic care at risk.
Schedule Your Consultation!
While wearing braces may cause a temporary change in your daily routines, the impact is minimal, and the reward is great. Contact Rollins & Petersen Orthodontics to schedule a consultation to begin your journey to a happy, healthy smile. Drs. Rollins and Petersen serve Arizona with five locations in Chandler, Gilbert, Globe, Mesa, and Queen Creek.
More Resources About Wearing Braces
- Life with Braces
- Brushing & Flossing with Braces
- Types of Braces
- Types of Orthodontic Appliances
- Palatal Expanders