Thanksgiving Foods to Avoid If You Have Braces

Nov 15, 2022

Thanksgiving is a celebration of friendship, family, and—of course—food! However, if you have braces, prepping for a food-related holiday might seem daunting. You certainly don’t want to disturb your holiday season with a last-minute trip to the orthodontist’s office. To make things a little easier, Drs. Hutta and Hutta have compiled a list of the top Thanksgiving Day foods to avoid. With a little planning ahead, you can keep your braces safe while still enjoying the holiday.

  • Turkey legs: This year, avoid eating any meat off the bone. Biting into a turkey leg with your front teeth can cause severe damage to the appliances of your braces. Cut meat off of the bone and into small, bite-sized pieces that you can chew with your back teeth. 
  • Corn on the cob: Much like biting into a turkey leg, you can end up distorting your wires or pulling off a bracket when you try to bite into a piece of corn on the cob. Instead, enjoy your corn by cutting it off the cob. 
Foods to Avoid
  • Chips and popcorn: These crunchy snacks are a braces no-go. But, they may be tempting when you’re still waiting on that turkey dinner to get out of the oven. Best to steer clear of these appetizers and opt for some dip with a soft veggie such as cucumber or pepper.Croutons: You might not think twice about biting into your salad, but beware of crunchy croutons hiding out in your greens! Croutons are hard enough to potentially damage your wires and brackets.
  • Pecan pie: The crunchy nut topping of your pecan pie can easily break your orthodontic appliances. Better to skip this holiday classic. Or, if you really can’t resist, just remove the nut topping and crust and simply eat the sweet filling of the pie!

Although there are certainly some restrictions on what you can safely enjoy this Thanksgiving, choosing modified versions of your favorite dishes or finding a delicious replacement won’t harm your holiday fun. From sweet potato casserole and mac and cheese, to mashed potatoes, gravy, and stuffing, there are still plenty of holiday dishes that are perfectly braces-friendly. Just make sure to avoid these top offenders, and you should be able to celebrate Thanksgiving as usual! If you have any questions or concerns about preparing for a braces-friendly Thanksgiving, give our office a call.