How Long After Braces can I Eat (And Why)?

Exact answer: Any time after the braces

Braces are devices used to align and straighten teeth and position them accordingly. The constant pressure and force from the braces move the teeth to the desired position. Braces are done mainly after all the baby teeth are gone and adult teeth have come mainly between the ages of 8-14 but the correct time always depends on the severity and cause.

Braces can be discomfort for the first few days. Each person faces a different kind of discomfort.

The most common misconception is braces can damage teeth but in reality not having proper oral hygiene while having braces can lead to oral problems.

How Long After Braces can I Eat?

ObjectiveTime Period
Food consumption after bracesAfter successfully putting braces

It is not about how long after braces can you eat; it’s about what you can eat after having braces. Having food right after having braces is normal. There is no exact time for one to eat after having braces. Even though having braces is a painless process but there is a chance of having soreness in the mouth for few days. It will take 5-6 days for the soreness to go. Doctors mainly advise having soft foods for the first few days.

The main disadvantage of braces is giving upon certain food habits. But mainly it’s for certain days only depending on the braces.

There are mainly 4 types of braces:

Types of bracesWhat to eat?What not to eat?
Metallic/Traditional bracesFruits and vegetables Soft foods like yogurt, mashed   potatoes, soups Anything easy to chewSticky foods Hard foods Sugary foods
Ceramic bracesSoft Fruits and vegetables Hot chocolates Regular foods Foods that don’t  produce any discoloration to bracesSticky foods like chewing gum Nuts Sugary and spicy foods Foods that make discoloration of braces
Lingual bracesSoft foods like yogurt Rice Boiled eggs Anything easy to chewCrispy food like chips Sticky foods Foods that are hard to bite and chew
Invisalign bracesAny food as far as the braces are removed while eatingCoffee Gums Hard food Sticky food Foods that cause discoloration of braces

As you get used to braces it straightens or aligns teeth making it easy to eat normal food. Proper food should be taken without damaging the braces.

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Why Does it Take Long to Eat After Having Braces?

It is normal to eat right after having braces but there are chances of having soreness or irritation in the mouth. To avoid this it is always advised to eat certain foods at least for few days or one week. Normally soft foods or foods which are easy to chew are good. But as per the braces, there can be different diet plans for each brace. Proper food should be taken to avoid oral problems.

Metallic braces: these braces are made of metal brackets that are aligned in front of teeth connected by a wire. The mouth will be sensitive for few days. The foods which are mostly recommended are soft foods like yogurt, mashed potatoes, soup, eggs in short foods which are easy to chew. Foods that should be avoided during the first few days are sticky foods like chewing gum, hard foods, and sugary foods.

But some foods that should be avoided completely even after getting normal are popcorns, chewing gum, ice nuts, etc as these tend to get in between braces. If not removed properly it can cause tooth decay.

Ceramic braces: These are like traditional braces only difference is that the brackets are made of tooth-like ceramic making it less noticeable. They are also known as white braces.

It’s important to know what food should be avoided and which food should be preferred. Foods that produce stain in ceramic braces should be avoided which include sweet, sugary drinks, spicy foods, coffees, and certain foods which produce stain or discoloration.

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The best foods for ceramic braces are soft fruits; hot chocolate can be used as an alternative for coffee, normal food can be taken.

The main objective is to avoid staining of ceramic braces.
Lingual braces: in these braces, the brackets are attached at the backside of the tooth facing the tongue. People with lingual braces should have well aware of what food to eat and what to avoid as it can lead breaking of lingual braces.
Sticky foods, crispy foods, foods that are hard to chew should be avoided. Normal foods can be taken with proper care.
Invisalign braces: these are removable invisible braces.

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The main advantage of Invisalign braces is they can be used without any restriction on food. You can take any food as long the braces are removed while eating. But there is a chance for the braces to get discoloration. Even though there is no restriction on food still certain foods should be avoided to avoid discoloration of braces. These foods include coffee, gums, spicy food, foods that produce a stain.

It’s important to remove the Invisalign braces while eating food

Conclusion

Braces can align teeth without damaging teeth but if not taken care of properly it can damage teeth. An important thing to note after having braces is to eat properly. To eat food which is advised by the doctor. No matter what type of braces it is always advised to take soft foods for the first few days after having braces.

Apart from eating proper care should be taken to avoid foods getting stuck in between the braces. If not cleaned properly the food stuck can cause tooth decay. Proper oral hygiene should be followed. Any problem with braces can lead to a delay in the result.

References

  1. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0889540605006268
  2. https://meridian.allenpress.com/angle-orthodontist/article-abstract/87/3/377/58777
  3. https://meridian.allenpress.com/angle-orthodontist/article-abstract/77/5/864/57907