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How to Survive the Holidays with Braces!

‘Tis the season for gingerbread houses, candy canes and all things Christmas.  Unfortunately, not all these holiday treats are safe for those wearing braces.  As a busy parent, the last thing you want to deal with during the holidays is an emergency orthodontic appointment to repair damage caused by a holiday treat. These tips can help you stock the pantry with braces-friendly treats and help your child maintain good oral habits during the holiday season.

Skip sticky, chewy and hard treats.

With supermarket shelves filled with seasonal treats, it’s tempting to bring home favorite candies and sweets. Unfortunately, holiday food and braces don’t always mix. For the sake of your child’s braces, avoid sticky, chewy or hard treats. Watch out for caramel, licorice, taffy, bubblegum, popcorn balls, peanut brittle, and fudge. Not only are these treats packed with sugar, they can also easily get stuck along brackets and between wires. The resulting mess can be a serious challenge to properly clean. Watch out for hard candies, including candy canes. Biting into these candies can bend or even break your child’s metal brackets.

Braces-friendly treat alternatives the whole family can enjoy.

  1. Fresh seasonal citrus fruits like nectarines and tangerines.
  2. Soft cheeses, like holiday cheese balls and logs without any hard nuts.
  3. Hot chocolate without the marshmallows or candy canes.
  4. Soft cookies, muffins and breads.
  5. Cinnamon Applesauce.
  6. Pancakes

Stick to regular brushing routines.

Maintaining good oral hygiene is important during the holidays when it’s tempting to overindulge in sweet treats. Brushing after eating can help stop the sugar in these treats from causing tooth enamel decay. If your family is travelling for the holidays, a change in your child’s daily routine could adversely impact their oral hygiene routine; however, whether you’re visiting relatives or hosting guests, remind your child about the importance of keeping up with their regular brushing and flossing routine.

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