braces and sugar

How to Limit Sugar While You Have Braces

Getting braces is a super exciting event in your life, but you should make sure to be extra careful about the foods you’re eating while you have braces. Braces make cleaning your teeth a little more difficult than normal, so limiting your intake of sugar is crucial in maintaining great oral health.

Certain foods can damage your braces and others are more likely to get stuck in your brackets. What should your approach be on sugary foods in general? Regardless of whether or not you have braces, sugary foods should definitely be limited, but there is a bit more risk to eating them while you’re going through treatment.

Enamel Damage

We all know sugar is really not great for your teeth, but with braces, the stakes are much higher. When you eat sugary foods, it coats the enamel of your teeth. Normally, this is relatively easy to get off, but braces add a complication. There are brackets and wires that you now have to work around. Although you might brush very thoroughly, there’s still a chance you will miss some of the sugar that coated your teeth around your brackets. (We know, they’re difficult to brush around.) The sugar left on your teeth can (and will) damage your enamel. This damage to your enamel leads to tooth decay and even cavities. Obviously this is something that you should try to avoid at all costs.

Prevention

If you’re going to eat sugary foods no matter what, or if you just want to indulge in a sugary treat every now and then, there are a few ways to reduce and prevent potential dental issues. Always be sure to clean your teeth very thoroughly after indulging in any kind of sweet treat (or any snack or meal). Rinsing with water after eating is a good way to help keep your teeth in tip-top shape as well. It doesn’t replace brushing, but it can help keep your teeth clean until you get a chance to brush.

Be Selective and Do Some Research

Some foods are sneaky and have more sugars in them than you might expect. Do some research on what kinds of foods have fewer sugars and which have more than you might expect. If you like to snack, making snacks in advance is a good way to help keep yourself from snacking on unhealthier options. Also, if you can, it’s smart to stock your fridge and pantry with primarily healthy, brace-friendly foods. You might think limiting sugar will be really difficult and affect your ability to eat tasty food, but there are plenty of delicious and healthy food options out there for you. If not for your oral health, do it for your physical health!

Limiting sugar sounds like a lot of work. In fact, braces in general sound like a lot of work, but they’re not. They require you to be more aware of the foods you’re consuming and the care you provide your teeth, but they help you to develop healthier oral routines. Being very careful with your teeth while you have braces will ensure sure your teeth are bright and shiny when you finally get your braces off at the end of treatment. The better you take care of your teeth, the better they will look once the braces are removed.