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Planning For Christmas With Braces

By Anthony December 7, 2015

Living with braces can be difficult at any time of year, but over the holiday season it can be particularly tricky! With so many delicious treats on offer, you can find yourself tempted by foods that you don’t come across in your usual day-to-day. Whether you have traditional metal braces, ceramic or Invisalign ® braces, the reality is that you need to be careful about what you eat. As tempting as it can be to break the rules and indulge, the last thing you want is to ruin your holiday by having a problem with your braces at Christmas.

Here’s our advice for how to plan for Christmas with braces, including foods to avoid and some helpful tips for what to do if you do find yourself dealing with problem.


Braces at Christmas — foods to avoid

Hard foods

Steer clear of any hard foods such as nuts, candy canes, biscotti, toffee, crisp or crusty bread, and hard biscuits like ginger snaps. These foods can lead to a broken bracket or damaged wire. Take care when eating raw veggies like carrots or celery, and fruits like apples. Make sure you cut the fruits and veggies into small pieces to avoid bending or snapping the wire in your braces.


Sticky foods

Anything too sticky can also cause damage to your braces as food can get lodged in between the brackets and your teeth. Be careful when eating foods such as toffee, caramels, chewy sweets, mince pies and sticky Christmas puddings. Avoid cakes and slices that have caramel or nuts in them, unless you want an emergency trip to the chair.


Too much sugar

We know if can seem almost impossible this time of year, but you should try to avoid eating too many lollies, or drinking too much fizzy drink. Having braces at Christmas makes it much harder to keep your teeth clean, and these things are loaded with sugar which can cause havoc on your teeth. If you do indulge in some sugary sweets, make sure you are brushing thoroughly around your braces after each meal to make sure you get all that additional sugar off your teeth.

Sometimes, as careful as we are, things can go wrong. If you have any problems with your braces over the holidays it might not be possible to get in to see us right away - especially if you’re out of town.

If you do have an issue, make sure you get in touch with us. Assess the severity of the situation, and whether it's injuring your cheek and causing excessive pain. Most likely, our friendly team will be able to repair the problem at your next appointment.

For any emergency situation involving sharp wire or tissue injury of the cheek or gums, please contact your family dentist or an emergency dentist for removal of the problem. 

Please remember to take care over the holidays, follow the cardinal rules of self care and all will be well!


If you have encountered a problem, there might also be some things you can do at home to temporarily remedy the situation before you come in to see us. Here’s some of the common things that might go wrong with your braces at Christmas, and what you should do:


Most Common Issues with Braces at Christmas

Loose or broken brackets

One problem you might encounter is a broken or loose bracket, which can leave an annoying edge poking into your gums, tongue or cheek. You can minimise the discomfort by putting orthodontic wax over the bracket, and stick to eating soft foods until you can get in to see us.


Broken wires

Sticky or hard foods can cause a wire to break, which will then be left sticking into your cheek, tongue or gum. Not pleasant! You can try to use the eraser end of a pencil to push the wire into a less bothersome position, and use a small amount of orthodontic wax over the protruding end. Do not attempt to cut the wire because you might accidentally swallow it. If the wire is causing a scratch or sore inside your mouth, make sure to keep the area sterile by rinsing with warm salt water. Make an appointment to come and see us as soon as you can.


Loose band

These are the metal rings which are cemented usually around your back teeth, and sometimes around your front teeth too. If you have a band come loose, you’ll need to come in and see us to have it recemented or replaced. If the band comes off completely, do not try and put it back on - simply keep a hold of it, and bring it with you to your appointment. As long as you are not in any discomfort, there is no harm in waiting a day or two to come in and see us.


If you run into problems with your braces at Christmas

If this is your first Christmas with braces, we know if can be a little daunting. Feel free to get in contact with us if you have any other questions, and if you do have any problems over the holiday season, your friendly team at Inner West Orthodontics are only a phone call away.



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