Has your dentist informed you that you need to have a tooth removed? The process will vary depending on many factors, including which tooth is being removed, its position in the mouth, and whether it is impacted (beneath the surface of the gums) or erupted (visible above the gums). Especially if the tooth is impacted, you will need to pay attention to what you eat following the procedure to ensure that the wound heals properly. Scroll down to learn what to eat after tooth extraction.
Dietary Guidelines Following a Tooth Extraction
Above all, remember to pay close attention to the advice provided by your dentist, oral surgeon, and dental hygienists. Ask questions at the appointment, hold onto any information sheets you receive, and don’t hesitate to call your dentist’s office with questions afterward. Regarding your diet, there are several important guidelines to follow:
- Only drink liquids and eat soft foods for about two days following the procedure.
- Do not use straws or suck on anything. This can dislodge the blood clot that forms after the tooth extraction, causing a painful condition known as dry socket.
- Do not smoke.
- Do not eat hot foods – wait until they’ve cooled a little.
- Avoid spicy foods.
- Avoid foods that might become stuck in the socket: rice, nuts, popcorn, fruits with small seeds (strawberries, raspberries, blackberries), etc. Don’t even include these items in your smoothies or milkshakes, as the seeds will remain.
- Avoid sticky foods, like candy.
- If possible, do not chew on the side of your mouth with the extraction site. If you’ve had extractions on both sides of your mouth, be careful about which teeth you use to chew.
- Stay away from carbonated drinks (like soda), which can dislodge the blood clot.
What to Eat After Tooth Extraction
Before your dental appointment, be sure to visit the grocery store to stock up on a variety of nutritious and tasty foods. Although you can’t anticipate exactly how you’ll feel after the procedure, expect some soreness and sensitivity. To be on the safe side, purchase enough soft foods for about three or four days of meals. If you aren’t sure what to eat after tooth extraction, consider some of the following items:
- Smoothies and milkshakes – Remember to use a spoon instead of a straw!
- Ice cream (without chunky or chewy add-ins)
- Yogurt (without chunky add-ins like fruit or granola)
- Soup (lukewarm and smooth soups only, like broths and creamy purées)
- Cottage cheese
- Refried beans
- Mashed potatoes and gravy
- Mashed potatoes with sour cream and cheddar
- Protein shakes
- Scrambled eggs
- Bananas (mashed up)
- Creamy peanut butter
After two days of only eating soft foods and liquids, you can begin eating some semi-soft foods that don’t require a lot of chewing. Hold off on that steak! Instead, try foods like the following:
- Macaroni and cheese
- Soft sandwiches
- Soup with soft noodles
- Pancakes and maple syrup
- Steamed vegetables
- Cereal soaked in milk until soft
- Crab cakes
- Cranberry sauce
- Baked apples
Although you can begin to expand your culinary horizons, don’t move too quickly. During this time, you should avoid tough, chewy, and crunchy foods. If you eat the wrong things, you might slow down the healing process and inadvertently cause yourself pain.
Above all, you will need to rest after your tooth extraction and give your mouth time to heal. If you run into any issues, simply give your dentist a call. Good luck!
If you’re looking for an experienced, reliable, and friendly dentist near Springfield, Missouri, contact Wilkinson Dental. Dr. Wilkinson and his team will give you the personalized treatment you deserve using state-of-the-art technology. For exceptional and comprehensive dental care, schedule your first appointment today by calling 417-708-0556 or requesting an appointment online. We look forward to hearing from you!