After a tooth extraction, it’s very important to eat food that’s soft, easy to chew and won’t irritate the wound site. You should also ensure you’re getting the right nutrition. A nutritious diet minimises the risk of complications, helps reduce swelling, provides nourishment and helps the wound-healing process. Below are some examples of foods to eat and how longer after the extraction you can eat them.
Ice cream isn’t particularly nutritious but it’s one of the best things to eat soon after an extraction because it’s cool, soft and doesn’t require much jaw muscle to consume. You can eat it comfortably when your mouth is tender. It can also help minimise any natural swelling. Opt for a soft-serve style ice cream and avoid mix-ins or any solid toppings.
Blended vegetable soups like tomato or pumpkin soup are great to eat after you’ve had a tooth extraction. They are easy to consume and do not contain bits that could irritate the area of surgery. They are also rich in vitamins and minerals. This helps ensure you meet the daily nutrition recommendations when you cannot eat many whole fruits or vegetables. Ensure your soups are either lukewarm or cold, as hot soups can cause irritation. Also, make sure to thoroughly blend vegetable-based soups to avoid chunks.
As long as they aren’t served too hot, scrambled eggs are another good food choice following a tooth extraction. They’re gentle, high in protein, abundant in vitamins and minerals and don’t require much effort in the way of chewing when eating them.
Smoothies are a great way to boost your nutrition and add fruit to your diet when you can’t eat solids. They are easy to consume and highly versatile. You can adjust the ingredients in smoothies to suit your tastes and meet your nutritional needs. Blend the fruits with some yogurt or kefir to add protein, calcium and probiotics to the drink as well as reduce the acidity of the fruits.
What to Avoid
There are a few types of foods that can irritate the wounds in your mouth as they’re healing after surgery, including:
- Spicy and highly acidic foods – These can contribute to pain and irritation.
- Crunchy and crumbly foods – Foods like chips and cookies are best avoided as they may get lodged in the wound area and disrupt healing.
- Most grains and seeds – Can also get lodged in the wound and disrupt healing.
- Alcohol – Best avoided during the recovery period after tooth extraction as it may irritate the wound or interact with any prescribed medication.
You should also avoid straws as their use can create suction in the mouth that dislodges the blood clot at the extraction site, leading to dry socket. A dry socket is a painful condition where the bones and nerves beneath the dislodged clot become exposed to air, causing pain and delaying healing
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