You made it through Halloween. Thanksgiving. Christmas. Valentine’s Day. And here comes yet another holiday to make things difficult for your braces-clad kiddo: Easter! You don’t want them to miss out on any of the fun traditions, but you need to protect your investment in their oral health, as well. Putting together baskets for a child in braces can be quite a task, so what’s a parent to do when playing at being the Easter Bunny?
Keep reading to find tips from Kaplan Orthodontics about what to avoid and what to hop into the holiday with when your child is wearing braces on Easter!
The good stuff
There are actually several treats that are compatible with braces, so we’ll explore those first.
As long as it doesn’t contain hard nuts or sticky caramel, chocolate is fine for your child to enjoy on Easter. This is good news for kids who love to bite the ears off their chocolate bunnies! Some other examples are M&Ms, Hershey’s chocolate bars, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, or York Peppermint Patties. Don’t forget to emphasize how important it is to brush and clean their teeth afterward, though, so they don’t hinder their orthodontic progress!
Okay, it might sound boring, but few things are better for your overall health than a serving of fruit! Soft fruits like bananas, oranges, raspberries, or blueberries make a great snack and look beautiful. It may seem an unconventional choice for an Easter basket, but spring is the perfect time to incorporate more fresh fruit into your family’s diet.
Who doesn’t love freshly baked cupcakes, cookies, and brownies? Delicious, easy to make, and full of love – these are a special addition to any Easter basket! You can even experiment with reduced sugar or sugar-free recipes. Just be sure to avoid any nuts in these treats, as they’re surprisingly hard and can actually break braces.
Think outside the basket! Channel your Christmas creativity and think of stocking stuffers as substitutes for candy. If you have a tween or teen, look into gift cards, movie tickets, and video games, or art supplies, phone cases, and makeup. For younger kids, water guns, chalk, butterfly nets, and small kites are super gifts for springtime fun, and sure to make them smile!
Forego the basket altogether and make Easter morning an adventure! Take a day out to dye Easter eggs together, or pack a picnic and enjoy a beautiful day outdoors. Candy lasts such a short time, so focus on making memories that last a lifetime instead. Spending time together as a family will go so much further than a handful of jellybeans! Speaking of which….
The bad stuff
Those carrot-shaped bags of jelly beans look so innocuous, but the brightly colored candies can actually do a lot of harm. They can stick to brackets, sometimes breaking them or even pulling them off of your teeth. They also boast a crazy high sugar content, making them a prime source for plaque that builds up in your mouth, reducing general dental health overall.
These candy-coated chocolate eggs are a special Easter treat, and while we can’t deny they’re delicious, that hard candy shell is no friend of braces! Crunching into them could break brackets or bend wires, so it’s best to avoid these until after your child’s treatment is complete.
Peeps tend to be a love ‘em or hate ‘em Easter staple, but having a child in braces can solve that dilemma for you. They may be adorable, with all that bright, sweet, sugary goodness, but their insides can wreak havoc on brackets. Soft and gooey marshmallow easily sticks to brackets and wires, and can require a whole lot of extra careful cleaning to remove it.
The stickiest of sticky offenders! Don’t let caramels anywhere near your child’s Easter basket while they’re in braces. These candies can actually pull the braces right off their teeth! Avoid at all costs and stick to caramel flavored hard candies that can be safely sucked on (but not bitten into or chewed.)
In spite of all our best efforts – and probably yours! – chances are your child will end up eating their fair share of Easter candy this year. Be vigilant in reminding them of how imperative brushing and flossing is in keeping their teeth clean and healthy, and make sure that they’re at least brushing well after every piece of candy. This will help speed along their orthodontic treatment, and can also ensure the end results are more desirable.
Kaplan Orthodontics in Dunwoody
If you’re looking for an orthodontist in Dunwoody and the surrounding area who can provide your child with enthusiastic, individualized care, Team Kaplan is here for you! With a warm, welcoming office and staff, a complimentary consultation, and an impressive knowledge of candy, Kaplan Orthodontics is the first step to your child’s forever smile. Call 770.458.5561 or click here to schedule an appointment with us. We hope your braces-friendly Easter basket is a great success!