Got Braces? 3 Tips To Help You Keep The Spirit Alive This Holiday Season

With the holidays just around the corner, it goes without saying that there is going to be a lot of get-togethers with traditional and sugary foods. If you currently have braces to improve the appearance of your smile, then this is a time of year that you could benefit from a few holiday survival tips. After all, you don't want food to be the reason that you end up having an orthodontic emergency over the holiday season, do you?

1. Watch What You Eat

After you undergo orthodontic treatment and receive your braces, you have to be very careful about what you eat. This is because certain foods, such as sticky and hard foods, can damage your braces. If you have had your braces for a little while, you have probably grown pretty accustomed to avoiding these foods. However, come the holidays, it can be difficult to realize that you have to avoid some of your most favorite foods – gingerbread cookies, caramel apples, peanut brittle, chocolate-covered pretzels and candy canes. Luckily, there are still plenty of sweet holiday treats that you can eat to satisfy that sweet tooth of yours without harming your braces, including cheesecake, custard, pumpkin pie and ice cream.

2. Take Smaller Bites, and Cut Foods Into Smaller Pieces.

When eating, it is a good idea to take small bites and use your molars rather than your front teeth to take those bites. This will put less overall strain on your braces, which will reduce the likelihood of any damage occurring. Whenever possible, cut food into bite-sized pieces. This works really well for fruits and vegetables, such as apples, celery sticks, etc. Also, carrots can be shredded before being added to salads. 

3. Brush Your Teeth More Frequently

Over the holiday season, you will obviously be consuming more sugary treats that usual. While it's okay to indulge this time of year, it is very important that you take certain measures to ensure that your indulgence in these delicious, sugary desserts do not cause harm to your oral health. In addition to brushing twice and flossing once a day, you may want to consider squeezing in some extra brushing throughout the day, such as after a large indulgence. This will help to wash away the sugar from your teeth so that it doesn't sit there to eat away at your enamel, resulting in tooth decay.

It can get very chaotic over the holidays, whether you're traveling or just have family members coming in. However, it is absolutely vital that you ensure you never skip your orthodontic appointments. If you run into any orthodontic issues over the holiday, such as a broken wire, that you feel that you need assistance with, do not hesitate to contact your orthodontist for dental services.