Eating with Braces

What Not to Eat with Braces: eating habits

A careful orthodontic patient can probably eat almost any food and do no damage to their appliances. However, these foods may cause trouble so please do not eat hard foods: nuts, ice, crisp taco shells, whole apples and carrots (cut them into pieces first), hard French bread crust and rolls, spareribs, corn on the cob (cut the corn off the cob before eating), and popcorn. These foods risk breaking brackets and wires. Also beware of nail biting and pen or pencil chewing habits, since these can damage your braces. Do not eat sticky foods: taffy, caramels, bubble gum, sticky candy of any sort. Use common sense about most foods.

What Not To Eat With Braces: Absolutely No Sticky Foods: (sugarless or otherwise)

  • Gum
  • Caramels
  • Sugar Daddies
  • Starbursts
  • Caramel Apples
  • Sugar Babies
  • Licorice
  • Toffee
  • Tootsie Rolls
  • Etc.

What Not To Eat With Braces: Absolutely No Sticky Foods: (sugarless or otherwise)

  • Jolly Ranchers
  • Jaw Breakers
  • Lolli-pops
  • Nuts
  • Bagels
  • Apples (unless cut up)
  • Pizza Crusts
  • Carrots (uncooked, unless cut up)
  • Doritos
  • Pretzels
  • Etc.

To Minimize Sugar Intake

Eat Less:

  • Candy
  • Ice Cream
  • Cake
  • Cookies
  • Pies

Once a Day:

  • Soda
  • Drinks with sugar

Check your braces occasionally for anything loose or bent. If a brace comes loose or you break a wire, please call our office at (770)-977-0377 or send us an e-mail at so that we can arrange an appointment long enough to repair it. Be as specific as possible with the receptionist or in the e-mail. If you lose your rubber bands, call us so we can mail you some more or drop by the office and pick some up.


You will notice that it is much harder to keep your teeth clean with braces (please see our Oral Hygiene page). Food collects around the braces and between your teeth, and can only be removed by brushing and flossing. If plaque remains on the teeth for any length of time, it will leave a permanent white scar on the tooth surface. Brushing after meals should become part of your daily schedule.

Sore Teeth

After braces are placed in the mouth it is normal for the teeth to be sore for about 1 to 3 days. Tylenol or Advil will help relieve this discomfort. Some irritation to the cheeks and/or lips is normal, but if you feel anything sharp poking you or any sores developing, please call our office at (770)-977-0377.