October 30, 2023
Research indicates that there are close to 200 million adults in the United States who are missing at least one tooth- and about 40 million of those are missing all of their natural teeth. While this does pose some challenges, there are options for tooth replacement.
Amores Dental offers several tooth replacement options including dental implants. Dental implant surgery is an innovative procedure that can restore the appearance and functionality of your smile. Implants solve the challenges that are often associated with missing teeth, including the ability to eat.
However, it’s important to note that appropriate aftercare is critical to ensure proper healing. Diet is a major component of aftercare. This article explains what you should eat and avoid after dental implant surgery.
Your diet is an important part of the healing process. Below are the foods that you can eat during this time:
Dental implant surgery is a fairly invasive procedure. Your mouth will be sore for at least a few days following surgery. Therefore, you’ll want to stick with soft foods that involve little to no chewing such as mashed potatoes, pudding, yogurt, applesauce, pureed fruits and veggies, and soups. These foods are easy to chew and will provide your body with the nutrients it needs to facilitate healing.
Your body requires protein to heal, which means you must include proteins in your diet including eggs, lean meats, tofu, and fish. The body uses protein to form collagen, which is critical for the regeneration of tissue. Meats should be cooked until tender, making them easy to chew and digest.
Veggies such as broccoli, carrots, and spinach are packed with vitamins and minerals that support the healing process. These veggies should be steamed to soften them and make them easier to chew, as well as to preserve the vitamins and minerals. Veggies also contain antioxidants that reduce inflammation and improve tissue recovery.
Soft fruits such as bananas, mangoes, and berries can be blended with milk or yogurt to create easy-to-consume, nutrient-rich smoothies. Smoothies will not only provide you with the nutrients to promote healing but will also keep you hydrated.
Cooked rice, oatmeal, and pasta are good options because they are soft and they are a good source of carbohydrates, which improve energy levels. Whole grains contain fiber, which improves digestion and overall well-being.
Dairy products contain calcium and other vitamins and minerals that your body needs for healing. However, it's important to note that these foods can cause complications if consumed within the first few days. Once the surgical site has healed, you can incorporate these into your diet.
Hydration is just as important for healing as nutrition. Therefore, make sure to stay hydrated by drinking lots of water and choosing foods that contain water such as watermelon and cucumber. These foods will keep your mouth moist, which helps keep you comfortable- and a well-hydrated body promotes circulation to transport oxygen and nutrients to the surgical site.
There are several foods that you should avoid when healing from dental implant surgery, including:
Raw veggies, nuts, popcorn, and other hard/crunchy foods can put stress on the implant itself as well as the surrounding tissues. This can cause implant instability as well as damage to the surgical site.
Spicy and acidic foods can cause irritation to the surgical site, which can have a significant impact on healing. This irritation can lead to complications including implant failure.
Foods that require a lot of chewing such as gum and tough meats put excessive pressure on the implants and should be avoided.
Foods and beverages that are high in sugar can cause the surgical site to become inflamed and infected. While you don’t have to completely eliminate sugar from your diet, you should significantly reduce it.
Alcohol and tobacco products can impact healing and increase complication risk. These substances should be avoided following implant surgery.
Avoid hot foods/beverages, as heat increases blood flow to the surgical site, which can result in swelling and/or pain. In some cases, they can increase bleeding as well- which can increase the risk of complications.
The team at Amores Dental understands that missing teeth can lead to a variety of challenges including eating. Dental implants restore natural function and appearance. However, it is important to note that you may need to make some dietary changes during the healing process. There are certain foods that promote healing and certain foods that can be detrimental to healing. Once you are fully healed and your permanent prosthetic teeth are in place, you should be able to return to your normal diet.
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