Dental implants are a welcome solution for many Americans with tooth loss today. The American Academy of Implant Dentistry reports that approximately 3-million Americans have dental implants. The popularity of this tooth-replacement option has grown significantly due to the significant improvement in tooth replacement they offer versus other options. Dental implants restore the form and function of natural teeth more fully than any other means of replacement. But, that’s the end game. A dental implant procedure comes before these benefits are realized. Proper post-surgery care is essential for the healing — and thus the long-term success — of your implants. This post considers the diet that is called for after implant surgery.

What to Avoid

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Any dental procedure usually leaves the mouth feeling sore. So, a dental implant procedure is no exception. To help your mouth recover quickly during the first seven days after surgery, follow these guidelines:

To prevent damaging your implant and setting your treatment back, avoid the following foods for at least a week after implant surgery:

  • Tough foods, such as steak and raw vegetables
  • Crunchy foods, such as popcorn and chips
  • Sticky foods, such as caramel and taffy
  • Chewy foods, such as gummies and bagels
  • Spicy foods, such as hot peppers and salsa
  • Acidic foods, such as oranges and tomatoes

If you’re worried that you won’t have any of your favorite meals after surgery, don’t fret about it. The strict diet is only temporary.

The First 48 Hours

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Now that you know what to stay away from, here are the details to take note of those first few hours after surgery.

  • For the first 24 to 48 hours, consume only cool liquids.
  • Avoid hot foods and drinks for several hours after surgery.
  • Do not drink through a straw or use a water bottle that requires suctions for at least 2 weeks. If you’ve had a sinus exposure or bone grafting, this is extended to 1 month.
  • Do comply with your “Week One” dietary guidelines that our care team provides. Following these precautions will give your mouth a better chance to heal properly. Read more at Eon Clinics

You are better off sticking with a strict diet of soft foods in the beginning to ensure the long-term benefits of your implants.

Soft Food Options

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Are you already dreading that boring post-op diet? Cheer up! There are some really good soft foods that’ll keep your taste buds happy and your body nourished.

Soft dairy

Due to the calcium found in dairy products, it is great for your teeth because it rebuilds lost minerals. Great options for soft dairy products include yogurt and milkshakes, which require little to no chewing, are filling and taste great. After several days, many are able to eat scrambled eggs as well.

Soft fruits

Of course, biting into an apple immediately after oral surgery is most likely out of the question, but soft fruits such as bananas and applesauce are perfect. Berries and grapes are typically easy to eat as well. After the first several days, oranges and apple slices are likely okay, although it is important not to irritate the mouth from too much chewing.

Potatoes

There are various recovery-friendly ways to eat potatoes, including mashed potatoes or boiled. The key is to make them as soft as possible to limit chewing. Read more at New York Dental Office

This could be the ideal time you try out those delicious soup and stew recipes you’ve been collecting. If you can’t eat all your favorite meals for a short while, you might as well make the most of it.

Dr. Robert Harrell is the Charlotte-area leader in implant dentistry. Schedule a free, no-obligation smile consultation with Harrell Dental Implant Center to discuss your implant needs. Call us today at 704-206-1330 or use the contact form on our website to set your appointment. We look forward to hearing from you.