Oral Hygiene

Taking Care of Your Teeth and Braces

Diet Changes

Avoid sticky or hard foods that may loosen your bands, break off brackets, or bend wires. Foods that cannot be cleaned off the braces may lead to discoloration and decay of your teeth. Examples are listed below:

Chunky peanut butter 

Corn on the cob 

Fruits with pits 


 Pumpkin seeds 

Sunflower seeds in the Shell 

Tacos (Hard Shell) 


Meat on the Bone 



Common Problems


Caramel apples 

Hard, sticky or chewy candy

Frozen candy bars 

Fruit rollups and fruit snacks 

Granola Bars 

Chewing gum 

Chewing ice 


Chewy or hard breads such as
bagels, pizza crust, bread sticks 

Emergency Info

What to Do in Case of Emergency
If you notice something has become loose (band, bracket or wire), please call as soon as possible.

We will then determine:

If you should come in for an extra appointment to make repairs

Extend the length of your next appointment to allow time to make repairs

Ease any discomfort with instructions over the phone

If you ever have any questions regarding your treatment, please don't hesitate to call us.

Loose Brackets or Bands

Call our office immediately for advice if a bracket or wire is loosened. The bracket may need to be re-fitted as soon as possible. You may have a situation that requires cutting a wire or sliding a bracket off a wire at night or over the weekend. If you need to cut a wire in case of emergency, you may use fingernail clippers that have been washed and sterilized in alcohol. Please call our office the next business day, so that we may schedule an appointment for you.

Foods to Avoid

For most situations, common sense will tell you what to avoid. Hard foods, sticky foods and foods high in sugar must be avoided. Hard foods can break or damage wires and brackets. Sticky foods can get caught between brackets and wires. Minimize sugary foods; they cause tooth decay and related problems. Nail biting, pencil and pen chewing and chewing on foreign objects should be avoided.

Examples of Sticky Foods to Avoid
  • Gum (sugar-free or regular)

  • Licorice

  • Sugar Daddies

  • Toffee

  • Tootsie Rolls

  • Caramels

  • Starburst

Always minimize Sugar Drinks
  • Soda

  • Sweetened tea

  • Gatorade

  • Kool-Aid

  • Drinks with sugar

It’s important to regularly check your braces for bent or loose wires and brackets. In the event of a loose/broken wire or bracket, call our office immediately to arrange an appointment for repair.