Braces and Holiday Treats

Your braces shouldn’t get in the way of your holiday fun.

Yes, you made it through Thanksgiving with flying colors — but pumpkin pie isn’t exactly the Holiday Bracesmost challenging treat to take on with braces. It’s the later winter holidays that can be a challenge, full of tough and sticky toffee or gooey fudge that loves to get stuck in braces.

If you have traditional braces or The Damon System, don’t worry. Your holidays aren’t in trouble, and you actually can enjoy a slew of treats that are orthodontics-friendly. You may need to get a little creative, and whipping up your own homemade treats give you more options — and more control.

For starters, what about that Christmas pudding? A classic British treat, the basic setup is a chocolate cake brimming with fruits and soaked with rum (the rum, of course, is optional).

Unfortunately, this figgy pudding has undergone some tough modifications over the years. The real thing is a far cry from that sticky brick for sale in supermarkets. Make it from scratch with the fruits of your choice, serve it warm and your orthodontics won’t be bothered at all.

The Big Day

Unlike a Thanksgiving turkey, few winter holiday dishes are mandated, so you have some flexibility. A holiday ham is common, and if you aim for extra juicy, your orthodontics won’t get in the way. However, you can also get a little more creative. Seafood isn’t just more tender and less likely to get caught in braces, it’s also lower in calories and less filling, so you get your protein fix but are still able to sample more holiday fare.

Great side dishes include smashed potatoes (save other preparations like roasted for another, braces-free year), homemade cranberry sauce, stuffing or dressing prepped without any overly tough ingredients, and a variety of soups. Don’t feel like you need to steer clear of anything in particular, though, with the exception of extremely sticky items. Simply carry a travel toothbrush and water pick with you, discreetly excusing yourself for a hygiene check from time to time.

Just Desserts

There’s no such thing as out of season when it comes to holiday desserts. Homemade cookies and ice-cold milk are staples, but you can choose exactly what you want to make. Go for soft options like snickerdoodles or chocolate chip cookies, keeping clear of nuts if you’re especially worried about getting them stuck in braces.

Also consider traditional pudding, chocolates and of course eggnog to keep your sweet tooth happy. Bake cakes, cupcakes, nut-free brownies and cheesecakes to your heart’s content.

Most importantly, enjoy the holidays in a healthy manner. You still have a few days left to make the most of your dental insurance for 2015. Get a head start on your New Year’s resolution to be healthier and call Johnson Elite Orthodontics today for a checkup — and maybe a special holiday treat when you check in!