If you’ve recently had a tooth extraction, chances are that you’re probably feeling a bit sore. You also need to show your mouth a little extra TLC, so everyday tasks like eating can become a bit more complicated. However, it is essential to maintain a nutritious and healthy diet after getting a tooth removed. This is because it reduces the risk of complications, helps reduce swelling, provides you with plenty of nourishment and aids the wound healing process. So, what should be on your menu after a tooth extraction to get you healing?
What Can I Eat After a Tooth Extraction?
The tooth extraction healing process can take a while so you must take care to eat food that will be suitable for your recovering mouth. After surgery, you should eat food that is softer and easier to chew. There should also be a high content of essential vitamins, minerals, energy and protein to assist with wound healing. Some foods you can eat during this time as part of your tooth extraction aftercare include:
1. Blended Soups & Broths
Soups without chunks like tomato or pumpkin are extremely easy to consume and will not irritate the extraction site. Plus, as they’re a liquid, they are great for keeping you hydrated. Furthermore, since soups are rich in vitamins and minerals, indulging in them will help ensure that you meet your daily nutrition needs that you would otherwise meet from eating whole fruits and vegetables. Broths are also an excellent source of nourishment and studies suggest that bone broth may even have anti-inflammatory properties.
2. Greek Yoghurt
In addition to being a rich source of protein, vitamins and minerals like calcium and zinc, the smooth and creamy texture of Greek yoghurt may help soothe any remaining soreness from your tooth extraction.
3. Scrambled Eggs
Eggs are a wonderful source of high-quality protein that are rich in vitamins and minerals. Pasteurised or omega-3-enriched varieties of eggs are preferable as omega-3 fats may assist in the wound healing process. If you eat eggs after surgery, opt for scrambled eggs since they can be easier to chew and swallow compared to other styles of egg preparations.
4. Mashed Fruits & Vegetables
Mashed potatoes, pumpkin, avocado or bananas are really soft and easy to eat when you are recovering from dental surgery. In addition to being easy to eat, they are highly nutritious foods as well. Potatoes are nutrient and calorie rich, while pumpkins have high levels of vitamins A, C and E, as well as minerals like potassium which assist with immunity. Bananas also have a wide variety of vitamins and minerals, such as potassium, vitamin B6, manganese and folate, while avocados are superfruits that are low in carbs and high in healthy fats. Avocados also contain good amounts of vitamin K, vitamin C and potassium.
5. Ice Creams, Sorbets & Jelly
It is often recommended to eat ice cream when you are recovering from tooth extraction surgery as the coldness may have a soothing effect on the wound. However, ice cream is typically high in sugar and fat, so try to swap it out for a healthier option like natural fruit ice creams and sorbets. Jellies are also a great option for when you want something sweet. These colourful snacks melt in your mouth, making them incredibly fun to eat.
What Food Should You Avoid Until Your Mouth Has Healed?
There are certain types of food and drink you should stay away from until your gums have had a chance to completely heal after a tooth extraction. Usually, patients are advised not to consume alcoholic beverages for a period of at least 24 hours post-surgery. For patients who are on powerful pain medication, it is recommended that they avoid consuming alcohol until the course of medication is complete.
As the surgery site will be sore and tender, you must make sure to avoid eating hard, crunchy, chewy or brittle foods like chips, nuts and popcorn for at least a week after. You may also wish to avoid eating tough cuts of meat since it will be a task to bite and chew through the food. If you manage to get food particles stuck between your teeth, it can also cause infections which will further complicate the matter and lengthen the healing time. Also try to avoid extremely spicy food as this can aggravate the inflammation.
Tips for Safe Eating After a Tooth Extraction
Once you have had your tooth removed, how you eat your food is equally as important as the types of foods you eat. As a rule of thumb, it is advisable to only chew food on the side of your mouth opposite to the treated area. Try to eat food that is either at a lukewarm or cold temperature as extreme heat could irritate the area of surgery.
Since you cannot eat a lot of whole foods, you may be consuming more liquids than solids in the initial stages. During this time, it may be tempting to drink through a straw to make things easier. However, this often has the opposite effect. The suction of the straw can sometimes dislodge the blood clot, thus opening up the wound, increasing pain and lengthening your total healing time.
Ensure that you are well-prepared for your tooth extraction aftercare by stocking up on approved food items pre-surgery. This way, you will have everything you need on hand and will not be inconvenienced when the time comes. While stocking up on food, make sure you include nutritious food that is going to fill you up, rather than just stuffing in bowls full of jelly and ice cream.
How Stanley St Dental Can Help You
Need to get a tooth removed? Stanley St Dental is who you should call! Our team of highly trained, motivated and experienced staff members offer you a wide range of general and cosmetic dental services, while making you feel relaxed and comfortable. We also are an emergency dentist in Collingwood, so if you suddenly need a tooth removed, we can help!