Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, and that means lots of sweet treats, and maybe even a little smooching with a significant other.
Braces might seem like a drag when it comes to enjoying Valentine’s Day, but that does not need to be the case. Here are a few ways to make the most of your braces this February 14.
Wear Your Braces with Pride
Valentine’s Day is the perfect opportunity to add red and/or pink bands to your braces.
There are many options: all one color, one color for the top and a different color for the bottom, or mix and match. Colored braces are fun, and they’re also an opportunity for you to take some control over having braces.
By the time Valentine’s Day is over, you’ll be ready to move on to green bands in honor of St. Patrick’s Day. Contact us today to schedule your appointment for holiday-themed bands.
Valentine’s Day Treats
Having braces doesn’t mean that you need to avoid sweet treats entirely. There are plenty of braces-friendly options out there.
Ice cream is one great choice. Buy a pint of your favorite flavor, or make your own. Ice cream or frozen yogurt will not get stuck in your braces or produce excess acid in your mouth. This idea also extends to foods like pudding, mousse, and even ice cream cake. The possibilities are endless.
If ice cream isn’t your thing, or if this February weather is too cold for chilled desserts, consider soft baked goods like cupcakes and brownies. Soft foods are easy to eat and less likely to get stuck in your braces. Again, you can make your own treats or opt for your favorite store-bought confection.
Boxed chocolates are typically pretty safe, too, as long as they don’t contain anything that’s too hard like nuts or too sticky like caramel. Look for things like peanut butter cups, Hershey kisses, and M&Ms.
Variety boxes like the Whitman’s sampler typically have a candy guide on the lid of the box so you know what’s safe to eat with your braces.
No matter what you decide on, make sure to brush and floss as soon as you can after eating anything sweet to avoid plaque buildup in your mouth.
Foods to Avoid
While ice cream and baked goods are ideal for Valentine’s Day, a few other popular sweet treats are not so great.
Caramels, gummies, and other types of sticky candy can slip between braces and teeth, which causes cavities to form, especially in back teeth that are harder to reach with a toothbrush.
Hard candy and lollipops can cause the brackets or wires to break or come loose. This includes the popular Necco Sweethearts that seem to be everywhere at this time of year. You can still give these hearts to your special someone; just try to avoid eating them yourself.
In addition, sour candies like Starburst and Skittles can be acidic to your teeth and actually wear down the enamel that protects them. Over time, this acid can cause tooth decay and cavities.
Don’t Forget to Smile
Beyond any food or gifts, Valentine’s Day is about showing love to those you care about. That should equate to a lot of smiling. Don’t be ashamed to smile because of your braces — show them off! The people closest to you will love you for who you are, with or without braces.
While you may need to sacrifice a little this Valentine’s Day, taking care of your teeth while your braces are on will help you get them off more quickly so you can get back to enjoying the holiday to its fullest.
From everyone at Midwest Orthodontics, Happy Valentine’s Day!