by Jozette Moyer & Shannon Fishel

Now with the holidays approaching, it is just a matter of time until you get that highly anticipated cookie platter. If you are someone who is in orthodontic treatment, there are just a few things to keep in mind to prevent any breakage to your brackets or wires. Obviously, braces do not mean that you need to deprive yourself from all of the holiday deserts, but it is recommended to follow the FOUR trigger words “Hard”, “Sticky”, “Chewy”, and “Crunchy”. If one or several of these words apply to a dessert, it would be wise to consider another treat to avoid harm to your braces.

Excessive breakage has many consequences to one’s orthodontic treatment. For example, broken brackets or ligatures can result in unnecessary or excessive movement to the teeth, prolonged treatment time, patient discomfort, and the need for extra appointments (just to name a few).

Listed below are a few of the common holiday treats that should be avoided, and some safe alternatives that you may enjoy. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office.

      Naughty List                                          Nice List

Peppermint Candies                              Peppermint Patties

Peanut Brittle                                         Peanut Butter Cups

Gingerbread Cookies                           Snickerdoodles

Nutty Treats                                           Peanut Butter Cookies

Chewy/Caramel Candies                    Chocolate Candies/Truffles


Here is a wonderful brace friendly recipe that you may want to try this holiday season.



1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting

1 (18 oz) box moist chocolate cake mix

1 (8 oz) package cream cheese, room temperature

1 egg

1 stick butter, room temperature


Preheat oven to 350°

In a large bowl with an electric mixer, cream the cream cheese and butter until smooth. Beat in the egg. Then beat in the vanilla extract. Beat in the cake mix.

Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours to firm up so that you can roll the batter into balls. Roll the chilled batter into tablespoon sized balls and then roll them in confectioner’s sugar.

Place on an ungreased cookie sheet, 2 inches apart. Bake 12 minutes.

The cookies will remain soft and gooey. Cool completely and sprinkle with more confectioner’s sugar, if desired. Makes about 2 dozen cookies.

Note: You can substitute the chocolate cake mix for any flavor that you may prefer.

Recipe courtesy of Paula Deen (