Thanksgiving is a great time of the year with the tradition of great feasts to celebrate what we are thankful for. And the good news is, there are plenty of foods you can eat for Thanksgiving. So, if you have been putting off starting your braces, now is a good time to start because there are lots of Thanksgiving foods you can eat. If you already have braces, you can be thankful that you are already on your way to straightening your teeth. And, we are going to tell you about the foods you can enjoy at your feast.
Dips are a great start. You can eat dips such as guacamole, cheese, hummus, and ranch. While you will want to avoid hard foods such as chips and carrots, dips can be great with cucumber or bell pepper slices, or bread. Cut up pieces of cheese are ok too. You can go really fancy and make a stuffed mushroom recipe.
Salads made with lettuce or green leafy vegetables such as spinach are fine. You can add in softer fruits or vegetables such as cherry tomatoes, cucumber slices, strawberries, or blueberries. Apple slices are ok if they are cut into small pieces. Ambrosia salad is a holiday favorite. It contains marshmallows but these are ok for braces because they are soft and but not gooey.
Thanksgiving dinner is traditionally turkey or ham. Both of these are okay to eat with braces as long as they are cut into pieces and you don’t eat them off the bone. You don’t want to eat meat off the bone because if you bite into the bone of a turkey leg you can cause damage to your braces. And don’t forget the stuffing. Stuffing is ok because it is generally soft.
Eat as much cooked vegetables as you like. You may not be a fan of vegetables, but the list includes mashed potatoes with butter or gravy, sweet potatoes with marshmallow topping, etc.
You can drink whatever you like for the holidays. There are, however, some drinks to keep in moderation because they can cause tooth decay or stain your teeth. For example, sodas (diet or regular) are very acidic and the acid can cause damage to your teeth. Fruit drinks and sports drinks are high in sugar so they promote tooth decay. Drinks such as grape juice, wine, and black tea can stain your teeth.
Now we get to the fun part. For starters, pumpkin pie is totally ok for braces. There are quite a few other desserts such as cream pies and fruit pies, soft cookies with hot chocolate, puddings, cheesecake, baked apples, ice cream, and frozen yogurt. I am sure there are more. Just be on the lookout for desserts with nuts. You want to avoid anything crunchy that could damage your braces, such as pecan pie. Even then, you can eat the soft part of the dessert and the crust, just not the pecans.
So there you have it. There are lots of foods you can enjoy for your holiday celebration! The simple rule of thumb – avoid hard foods such as bones, nuts, chips, and uncooked vegetables. Also, beware of hard or chewy sticky foods, such as hard candies and caramels. And watch for acidic foods such as fruit juices, sports drinks, teas, and wine that can stain your teeth. Otherwise, dig in and enjoy the holidays!
Dr. David McDonough