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On Cinco de Mayo, we all love to join in the celebration of Mexican culture! Parades, music, food, and dancing… and, of course, the amazing cuisine. If you’re sporting braces this Cinco de Mayo, you may be worried about missing out on your favorite foods—what will you do without the hard, crunchy tortilla chips, tacos, and nachos? Well, don’t worry! There are plenty of Mexican foods that are braces-approved and even ways to adapt your favorites, so get ready to join the festivities with this list in mind.

Appetizer: Substitute the Chips

Chips and salsa is likely the first hurdle you’ll encounter this holiday—you’re sitting down, ready to resist and be good to your braces, but there they are, first thing, right in front of you! Don’t give in just yet. You can ask (nicely!) for some soft tortillas if you’d like. Rip and dip those soft tortillas and you won’t have to feel left out while you wait for your meal!

Main dish: More Bang for your Bite

You’ve got a wealth of options when it comes to your main dish, as long as you go for something in a soft shell, and preferably something you can eat with a knife and fork. Biting into a soft burrito isn’t as bad for your braces as chomping a crunchy taco, but cutting it into bites will still make it easier on you (and help you avoid getting gooey tortilla stuck in your teeth).

Enchiladas are a great example, or you may want to try something new! Chile con carne, tamales, chiles poblanos, and many more delectable dishes are at your fingertips. Think of your restrictions as an opportunity to find a new favorite!

Dessert: More than Fried Ice Cream

Some of our favorite popular Mexican desserts—fried ice cream and churros—can be a bit tricky with braces. They’re delicious, but can be crunchy, sticky, or require you to bite right in. This year, go for flan, a delicious soft custard dish, or tres leches cake, a super-airy sponge cake soaked in three sweet milks.

It’s hard to go wrong as long as you follow your orthodontist’s guidelines. Think about all the great foods you can try instead of the few you’ll have to avoid, and you’re sure to have a feliz Cinco de Mayo!


At Birmingham Orthodontics, our mission is simple:  we create smiles.  Not only do we straighten the crooked grin, fix the bite, and adjust the jaw, we also brighten yearbooks, help young people come to like their looks, and give adults the confidence they have wanted for a long, long time.  We also believe in our staff. Our culture of continuous learning has allowed us to host monthly training sessions for each team and bring in leading industry consultants to help keep us ahead of the curve.  Contact us for a free consultation, or any questions you might have.

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