Unexpected dietary changes

Alex got her braces on her upper front teeth last Sunday. Then, after a month, the braces on the lower front teeth. Alex specifically wanted colored elastics to go with the braces and, for this month, the elastics are blue. She was wondering aloud last night what color they’ll be next month.

Alex was the one who wanted the braces. She’s growing up and getting conscious that her front teeth were not as straight as Sam’s. We’ve been planning this for so long but finding the right orthodontist proved tougher than we imagined. See, since we moved to the suburb, we haven’t seen any dentist on a regular basis. We used to go to one for the minor jobs like propylaxis but, for the bigger jobs, Speedy still went to our dentists of over ten years, a husband and wife team in the city.

We would have preferred to bring Alex there for her braces. The kids have never been to any dentist but them. Trust, after all, is a big word with kids and dentists. But braces require regular check-ups and the city is too far away. And, more than that, it’s really time to let go of too many city hang-ups. We should have a regular dentist here in the suburb.

We finally chose one, the orthodontist who did the braces of Sam’s best friend, Joan.

Alex Veneracion

We were all warned that Alex would experience discomfort, and pain, for the first few weeks. No diet change is necessary but she will have to bite into meat carefully.

Well, the no diet change was easier said than done. Alex can’t tolerate meat, she’s having difficulty chewing vegetables and she can’t even eat regular sandwiches. Because it is simply physically impossible to prepare two sets of meals each time, we’ll all have to go on a diet change. Some compromises are in order and everyone will have to cooperate.

Alex herself isn’t being difficult. She’d be happy with instant noodles but I won’t allow it. Just because she can’t chew well doesn’t mean she has to deprive herself of healthy food.

So, we’re cutting down on red meat drastically. Overcooked chicken is okay, lots of fish and lots of soupy dishes. Alex even suggested overcooked pasta. Lugaw (congee), with finely minced meat and vegetables, would be ideal but no one is crazy about lugaw in my family except Speedy.

There’s going to be a lot of baking too since the only “bread” that Alex can eat is chiffon-type cakes.

The orthodontist said the braces will probably be off in less than a year. We’ll all be skinny by then.


  1. says

    Connie, I am so empathizing with Alex and all of you. Can’t wait to get these braces off, hopefully by yearend!!!

    Yes, finally papayat na kayong lahat, hehe. I remember the first time those braces came on. My soft diet was mashed potatoes, soup, oatmeal, soft bread, gelatin, flan, lahat na ng soft. I was kidding my friends that about the only soft food I still had to try was Gerber.

    Funny nga about those colored elastics. Para akong bata, choosing whether I’d go for my ultimate PINK or that great blue or peach color.

    Tell Alex for me I truly feel for her. But when things feel worse, all she has to do is look ahead to the day it comes off and she flashes her closeup smile. :-)

  2. says

    My 6-year old daughter is undergoing a “change of teeth” experience. Her two lower permanent came out when the baby teeth haven’t fell off yet. The results.. sungki (crooked teeth). My dentist friends told my mom (who was with my daughter when they went for a check up), that being sungki is genetic and braces are the only solution. All along I thought that pushing the teeth with one’s tongue helps, di pala.

    I guess I’ll be confronting braces problems 5-10 years from now.

  3. says

    oh, i feel for your daughter, miss sassy. i remember the time i got my braces, i couldn’t eat anything solid for 2 weeks that i lost a lot of weight. but after a while i got used to it, and i had the stupid idea of eating sugarcane — two of the brackets fell off. :twisted:

  4. says

    Jane, am adding mashed potatoes and gelatin. And leche flan is her favorite!!! Too bad mangoes are no longer in season. Bananas will have to do.

    The only thing that keeps her brave and patient is exactly as you say, Jane. When the braces finally come off, she’ll smile her most confident smile. :)

    Ami, that’s what the ortho said — crooked teeth are genetic. My mother and my mother-in-law both have crooked teeth. My father and father-in-law had perfect teeth. Malas lang nakuha nya yung crooked genes hehehehe

    Why sugarcane, Karen? hahahaha Buti hindi chicharon. :razz:

    Jon, ah no. Never. No-no yan sa bahay namin. :)

  5. says

    Kawawa naman si Alex. But she has to bear with it, endure the change in diet. My nephew, a very robust child, had his braces. But he couldn’t keep away from food! Kaya ayun, the braces broke. Pinalitan na naman. But then, I’m sure you can come up with nice fitting dishes for everyone, Connie! Dito na ngayon lalong macha-challenge ang iyong pagiging sassy cook.. hehehe.

  6. JS says

    My 13 yr old just got braces this week (the uppers – the lowers next month.) It was not as bad as we imagined. She can’t tear food – like bite off a piece of sandwich. All food (fruit, meat, sandwiches) has to be cut into little pieces but she can chew. She’s not on a soft diet, just on the itty bitty pieces of food diet. I was told that there would be discomfort for a day or so each time the braces are tightened (about once a month.) She is getting a lot of homemade fruit smoothies/shakes (beat the heat!) and egg drop soup.

  7. says

    Time to break out the blender and get a good recipe for carrot shakes. =)

    Helps in a coupla ways, the cold will ease her pain/discomfort, and she’ll still get her veggie fix.

    I had braces too, I don’t envy her, but when I had mine they were still doing things in medievally painful ways, so I guess you could call her lucky. =)

    After a year, you’ll all thank her for your change in wardrobes and altered outfits. LOL

  8. says

    maybe it’s a call for better health. after what i myself had witnessed with one of my friends in his near-fatal stroke, any change in diet that calls for something easier, healthier and better on the stomach and the metabolism to digest and absorb is GOOD. see how changes in your own children are keeping you and speedy honest? hahahaha. just be grateful that in all things and with our lives, everyone is blessed with good health. :-)

  9. says

    JS and Chris, ah you ought to read the entry I posted after this. The blender story and why I had to go out today to buy a new one.

    Yah, Ben, I think the easier on the stomach policy will do us all good. Just came home from the supermarket. Naibahan ako sa mga dala ko pauwi. It was like someone else’s grocery. :razz:

  10. says

    I had braces for 4 years!!! It’s hard lang in the beginning and whenever the ortho tightens them. The rest of the time is a breeze. Me, I was my ortho’s nightmare. I’d always come in with bubblegum or popcorn stuck in the brackets!! Oh yeah, I remember going to Spanish class was also hell. Lalo na when we had to roll the R’s…grabe sakit sa ngipin!!

  11. says

    Ann, and swerte naman nung mga hindi na-affect yung eating habits. Dito we can’t even buy kalamay or anything sticky kasi kawawa naman si Alex.

  12. brenda says

    I’ve also had braces before (during my younger years) for about a year or so, i think. The first 4months yata ang laki ng ipinayat ko, kasi ang sakit-sakit talaga ang kahit nga uminom ng tubig kailangan gamit ako ng straw. Ang lagi kong pagkain lugaw or anything soupy, tapos sabaw lang ang akin. Nakakain naman ako ng skyflakes, pero sawsaw sa kape muna. I was then living in Marikina, my dentist is in Malabon so ang layo ng byahe para lang palitan yung multi-colored na rubber to tighten the braces. My dentist taught me how to change the rubber myself so I was kind of expert sa pagtanggal and pagpalit ng rubber. It was difficult the first time, then the rubber gets smaller and smaller tapos ang sakit talaga right after you have changed the rubber. We just agreed to meet every other week instead of weekly. I had all neon-colored rubbers, every week, iba-ibang color minsan nga terno pa sa suot ko eh…

    Dont worry Alex, after that, ang ganda-ganda na ng feeling mo…feeling Miss Universe ka na with perfect teeth.

  13. Nikita says

    Hi Connie.

    Carlos just had his braces installed also. Sobrang crooked kasi teeth niya because his baby teeth wouldn’t fall off even if the permanent ones were coming out already (took too much milk when I was pregnant with him, but that’s an entirely different story) and on the opposite spectrum, one permanent tooth didn’t come out because his last baby tooth was blocking it and this had to be pulled out early June. Then six brackets lang muna installed sa upper front last June 30, and then he had dental surgery July 13 because the permanent tooth didn’t erupt yet even after the baby tooth was removed and a bracket was installed on the tooth that was exposed. Last Saturday (July 28), the six of the front lower brackets were installed naman.

    On all dates above, I bought yogurt and oatmeal and all kinds of soft food and had lugaw prepared for him as well. But surprisingly, Carlos was ready to eat normal food by the middle of each week (except lechon kawali, crispy pata and the like :-P and the really gooey food that would stick to the braces). I don’t know if it’s because the brackets are being installed in a staggered basis (those for the pre-molars and molars will be done September pa yata). His ortho actually told us beforehand not to expect for him to lose weight because of the braces.

    Just sharing…

  14. says

    Nikita, alam mo ba that I actually created a new food blog (soft diet) thinking that I would have to cook separate meals for Alex for so many months… HAHAHA Wala rin. After a week, she was eating fried chicken. What she stays away from is cheese or anything that sticks to the braces. Pero, meat? No problem. Baka it will hurt after every adjustment lang. Amazing resilience ng mga bata. Ayaw magutom. :grin:

  15. says

    Hi, I also got my braces last June, and same with your daughter, the pain was so great that I could not even chew bread on my first week of wearing the braces. Luckily, after about 3 weeks, I was able to find a way or manage to eat meat or other food by ensuring that I cut it into pieces (small bite size) and ensure that the cook food was tender. Likewise, laging may sabaw tuwing kakain kaya at least I was able to eat normally. The real problem was eating out, dahil pagkatapos kumain, you immediately want to go to the washroom to ensure that no food debris got stuck on your braces (specially the front part)…coz you won’t be able to smile to the other person (ha ha ha).

  16. says

    Alex is lucky. The braces will be off after 6 months only instead of the usual 1 year. They’ll be off by Christmas. After that, retainers. :)

  17. says

    4 years??? ang tagal naman nun, grabe! si alex had to miss class yesterday because she was in pain. i hope that she adjusts soon kasi nakakaawa.

  18. ann says

    hello po. iba iba yata ang experiences natin sa braces. mine was only terrible on the first three days. by the second week, i was already eating popcorn.

    my boyfriend used to munch on ice even while he was on dental braces. he ended up wearing it for four years (15-19). pero this was already his second time cause his first braces when he was 11 didn’t come out right. naging assymetrical kasi ang face nya because of it.

    my friend was able to have pork for her lunch on her first day.

    my other friend told me na on her 3rd day, her friend ate pinasugbo (yun yung dehydrated (i think) saging delicacy popular in iloilo).

    pero me isa akong friend who said na she really had to go on a soft diet for the entire year.

    question ko lang po. i eat any kind of food even while i’m on braces but non of my brackets fell off. pero yung sa pamangkin ko, 6th month pa lang nya ngayon and she already had 3 reinstallations of brackets and bands (and she insists na she doesn’t eat anything hard which i believe a hundred per cent knowing her diet). is it normal ba jan sa pinas? i’m worried kasi cause she pays for her reinstallations which i never did with my ortho.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *