Getting dental implants is an exciting decision for anyone who is missing one or more teeth. The process, however, can be fairly lengthy and complex. To ensure that your dental implant procedure and recovery go smoothly, it’s important to follow all of the aftercare and recovery instructions provided to you – including what to eat and not eat in the days immediately following surgery.
What to Eat After Dental Implant Surgery
For one to two weeks after your dental implant surgery, you will want to keep to a diet of soft foods that have a mild flavor and moderate to cool temperature. Some great suggestions of things to eat after dental implant surgery include:
- Oatmeal – Warm oatmeal or cold overnight oats is a nice soft meal that will be gentle on your gums while they heal.
- Nut Butter – Any kind of nut butter, enjoyed alone or mixed into oatmeal, is a great source of protein and fat while you recover.
- Soft Fruits – Avoid hard, crunchy fruits, but feel free to enjoy soft fruits like mashed banana, applesauce, canned peaches, or canned pears.
- Smoothies – If you have harder fruits that you would like to enjoy, blend them up into a smoothie with some spinach and plain yogurt.
- Mashed Potato – Mashed potatoes with soft fixings (butter, sour cream, or cheese) are a good option that won’t irritate your healing gum tissues.
- Eggs – Eggs cooked just about any way offer a wide variety of nutrients and also make a great meal while you’re recovering from dental implant surgery.
- Broth and Soups – You can also enjoy broths and soups while you recover. Be sure to let them cool down so that they are just warm and not hot when you eat them. Also, we recommend sticking to pureed soups during the first few days of recovery and saving chunkier soups or chili for after a few days of healing.
- Dairy – yogurt, milk, cottage cheese, soft cheese, ice cream
- Pudding – Pudding in any flavor is a nice treat and easy to eat while you recover.
- Protein Shakes – Protein shakes can also be a good source of protein and other vitamins to ensure you’re maintaining a balanced, well-rounded diet while you heal.
- Soft, Flaky Fish – You can also eat fish that is cooked up to be flaky and soft.
- Tofu – Tofu that isn’t prepared in a way that makes it overly crisp can also be eaten during your early recovery from implant surgery.
Any soft food that doesn’t require much chewing after your surgery should be just fine to eat. Plus, remember that it is important to stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water while you recover.
What to Avoid After Dental Implant Surgery
After dental implant surgery, there are some foods, activities, and other things that you should try to avoid in order not to disturb the incision site in your mouth. These include:
- Hot or Spicy Foods – Any spicy foods like salsa, chili, or hot peppers can irritate your gum tissues that will be extra-sensitive following surgery. This can cause painful irritation and inflammation.
- Hard Foods – Chewing on ice, nuts, or hard candy after surgery can damage your incision site.
- Chewy Foods – Overly chewy foods like steak, raw vegetables, or taffy put too much pressure on your delicate incision site after surgery.
- Crunchy Foods – Crunchy foods like nuts, crackers, or chips can damage your incision site, too.
- Acidic Foods – Like spicy foods, acidic foods and drinks such as citrus or soda can irritate and inflame your sensitive gum tissue while it is still healing.
- Straws – Sucking on a straw can dislodge the blood clots that help your incision site to heal properly. Liquids are a good choice after surgery, but be sure to enjoy them without a straw.
- Alcohol – Alcohol can increase inflammation, leading to worse swelling and pain at the incision site.
- Tobacco – Tobacco use of any kind can slow your recovery process.
Further Aftercare Instructions for Your Dental Implant Surgery Recovery
In addition to providing you with guidance regarding your diet after having dental implant surgery, our prosthodontist provides patients with additional aftercare instructions that are intended to help speed recovery and ensure a proper recovery. These instructions typically include avoiding exercise or other vigorous physical activities for two to three days after your surgery, keeping your head elevated to prevent swelling, using a cold compress to keep swelling at bay, and using over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications to treat any pain that arises.
We will also send you home with a list of signs or symptoms that could indicate complications or infection after your surgery. Some of these include severe pain, significant swelling, visible pus at the treatment site, and more. If you notice any concerning signs or experience severe symptoms, you should contact our office as soon as possible for evaluation and treatment.
Comprehensive Dental Implant Procedures and Care in Loveland, CO
At Northern Colorado Implant and Prosthetic Dentistry, we’re pleased to provide our patients with comprehensive dental implant services from initial consultation, preparation, and surgery to permanent crown placement and ongoing maintenance. To learn more about why dental implants are the best tooth-replacement treatment option and how dental implants can help you replace one or more missing teeth, we welcome you to contact our office to schedule an appointment with Dr. Andrew Bock today.