How Long After Getting Braces Can You Eat Solid Food?


How Long After Getting Braces Can You Eat Solid Food?

Eating is, obviously, something that’s massively important to do. To that end, you have to do it even when you’re having braces, which can be quite exceptionally painful. While braces themselves are quite painful, it feels as though they’re more tender than anything else – meaning that the pressure of eating can be quite tough.

In this article, we’re going to talk about how long after getting braces for the first time you can eat solid food, as well as how to build up the food that you’re eating and make sure you’re eating enough.

How to eat with braces

Eating with braces will be more or less painful depending on where the stress of the braces mostly is. For instance, if the braces are putting a lot of stress on your front teeth, then you might not be able to bite down, but chewing is totally okay.

The best way to discover which part of your mouth is most tender is to gently explore your mouth with your tongue – press your tongue against your teeth very gently, and see where it hurts.

Most people find that the majority of their pain is at the front of their mouth – those teeth that you really want to be straight. In that case, try to avoid solid food that you would have to bite down on.

Alternatively, if the pain is in your molars, then you might be better served by avoiding chewy, sticky foods.

What can you eat on the first day?

This really depends upon the level of pain that you’re in. You might find that the best thing to do is to avoid chewing altogether. In this case, you might prefer to opt for a soup or a broth.

To step it up a little from that point, mashing vegetables is your friend! You could try mashed potatoes with some different herbs and additions, or, perhaps some yogurt or soft cheese. These things can have a very small amount of texture without being too hard and hurting your mouth.

If you’re in no pain at all, then you can go wild and eat whatever you might like. However, even then you should avoid hard, crunchy foods, just while the glue and other elements of the braces are still settling into your mouth.

How can you introduce more solid food?

A great way to introduce solid food is to overcook starches and similar items. For example, overcooking pasta and rice a little bit can ensure that your food is softer than it would normally be, while also ensuring that it’s a little bit toothsome, to encourage you to bite down and chew.

You could also opt for things that, while they are totally solid, have a lot of give and flexibility. A great example of this would be a banana – while it’s certainly a food that you have to chew on, it doesn’t have very much texture at all. This allows you to ensure that you’re introducing yourself to chewing again, but without so much resistance as something hard, like a steak or a cracker.

What’s best to start with?

The best place to start, we would argue, is most like a smoothie. The main reason for this is that you can start off with a smoothie that’s totally smooth, like you’re just drinking thicker water through a straw.

Then, you can slowly add more lumps and clumps to the smoothie by blending it less and less – a small chunk of berry, for instance, wont prove too large a challenge for you to chew and swallow, but it will allow you to work those chewing muscles, and get used to the feeling of having the braces in your mouth while you eat.

After you’ve built up more and more with smoothies, you’ll essentially just be eating a fruit salad. After you’ve gotten started there, you’ll essentially be right in place to move on to eating solid foods again in the future.

So how long after getting braces can you eat solid food?

Well, frustratingly, there’s no real concrete answer for everyone. The main reason for this is that the thing which stops you from eating solid food is the pain that you might feel when eating. This is different for everyone, since everyone has slightly different braces.

For people that feel absolutely no pain at all, they should be able to eat soft food straight away, and hard, crunchy food in the next day or two. The reason that we would recommend this short period of waiting is that it’s entirely sensible to allow the braces themselves to properly settle in your mouth.

For the average person, who will feel some pain, they will typically struggle to eat anything more than overcooked rice or pasta for the first day or so. From that point on, they will slowly come back to eating the food they would regularly eat, typically over the course of two to three days.

For someone who’s a little more sensitive, or who has had particularly intense dental work done, they may only be able to eat liquids for a day or two after first having braces on. Then, they may progress to soft solids like pasta and rice, and, after two or three further days, regular food.

However, it’s worth pointing out that you should always follow the advice of your orthodontist above other things – if your orthodontist tells you not to eat solid food for 24 hours, then it’s very sensible to listen to them: they’re certainly telling you that for a reason!


We hope that this short article has helped to sum up the best ways for you to eat solid food just after you’ve had braces. It can be painful, sure, but it’s important to make sure that you eat right!

Remember, always follow what your orthodontist has said first of all, and listen to any pain that you might be experiencing. It’s better to be gentle with yourself than to push yourself too hard.