Fall is a beautiful time to be here in Chantilly, Virginia. We love to spend time this season thinking about all the things we are thankful for, including our wonderful patients! We hope you get to enjoy some time with your families for Thanksgiving this year. Sometimes it can be difficult to enjoy regular holiday traditions when you have braces, as your diet is restricted for safety reasons. However, we have good news! Most traditional Thanksgiving foods are actually braces friendly. We wanted to put together this guide to give you some tips about which Thanksgiving dishes to indulge in and which ones to save for next year.
While you’re waiting for dinner to be ready, of course you’re going to snack! You’ll want to avoid crunchy raw veggies, overly crusty breads, and other difficult to chew foods. Try snacking on cheese and crackers or fruit! Salads are also a great way to balance out some of the heavier traditional Thanksgiving treats on your plate. Leafy greens are awesome for your teeth, but be cautious of toppings like raw veggies and croutons that can be surprisingly crunchy and damaging to your braces!
Most of the traditional main dishes at the Thanksgiving table are perfect for consuming with braces! Turkey, ham, and chicken can all be tender enough to eat with braces. Of course, you’ll want to cut up your meat into bite-sized pieces and avoid eating it directly off the bone, which requires a harmful tearing action. Sorry, no turkey legs this year!
Most traditional Thanksgiving side dishes are already braces friendly! Orthodontic patients are free to enjoy sides like potatoes, corn bread, rolls, stuffing, steamed veggies, and soft casseroles. The only side that you’ll need to watch out for is corn on the cob, as the same tearing action that makes turkey legs a bad choice is required. However, as long as you scrape it off the cob first, corn is perfectly safe to eat!
A lot of Thanksgiving desserts are also braces friendly! Pumpkin pie, chocolate cream pie, and apple pie are all soft enough to chew! You’ll want to avoid desserts with nuts, like pecan pie, and sticky foods like caramel apples. If you’re looking to order some pies for your holiday celebration, check out The Pie Gourmet or Chantel’s Bakery!
Be sure to bring your travel toothbrush with you so that you can clean your teeth and braces after enjoying your delicious Thanksgiving dinner. We are so thankful for our awesome patients and their beautiful smiles. Happy holidays!