Food Restrictions

As a general rule, hard, sticky foods and foods high in sugar must be avoided while you are in treatment. Hard foods can easily break or damage wires and brackets, while sticky foods often get caught between brackets and wires and can be difficult to remove. Always minimize sugary foods; they cause tooth decay and related problems.

Examples of Sticky Foods to Avoid:

  • Gum (sugar-free or regular)
  • Licorice
  • Starburst
  • Toffee
  • Tootsie Rolls
  • Caramels
  • Now and Laters
  • Taffy

Minimize Sugary Foods like:

  • Cake
  • Ice cream
  • Cookies
  • Pie

Examples of Hard Foods to Avoid:

  • Ice
  • Nuts
  • Apples (unless cut into small pieces)
  • Raw carrots
  • Bagels
  • Chips
  • Corn on the cob
  • French bread crust/rolls
  • Hard taco shells
  • Pretzels
  • Pizza crust
  • Popcorn
  • All hard candies (Jolly Ranchers, Lemon Heads, etc.)

Other Things to Stay Away from:

Do not chew on any hard objects. Many people break their brackets because they chew on things that are not food. For example:

  • Pen chewing
  • Pencil chewing
  • Nail biting
  • Toothpicks
  • Straw chewing

Something About Drinks!


Please drink all drinks with sugar in them through a straw. This helps keep the sugar off your brackets and away from your teeth. The acid from sugary drinks collects on the braces and can damage your teeth.


You will not be able to tear food with your front teeth without breaking brackets. You will need to cut the food into pieces and chew it with your back teeth.

If you do break a bracket, please keep the bracket and call our office as soon as possible so that we can allow for more time at your next appointment to repair your braces. Otherwise, we may not have time to repair your broken bracket and may need to reschedule your appointment for another day.

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