Did you know that there are more than 36 million people in the United States who are missing all of their teeth and even more who are only missing one tooth?
Dental implants are one of the best options to replace a few missing teeth and the great thing about them is that they look as realistic as real teeth. They also can function as well as real teeth.
But there is a problem: What can you eat after getting a dental implant and what should you avoid? If you end up eating something you shouldn’t after getting dental implants, you might actually end up ruining your dental implant for the future.
Keep reading to learn more about what to eat when you get your dental implants for the first time.
The reason why you need to be so careful with what you eat after the dental implant procedure is that dental implants need to go through a healing process before they are ready to go.
When you come home the same day you get your dental implants, you will want to be especially careful with what you eat. That’s because your gums and tongue will still be numb from the procedure.
For that reason, if you can’t feel the inside of your mouth, you will be at risk of biting your tongue, your cheek, or otherwise damaging the tissue inside of your mouth. This is especially true when you eat hard foods like peanuts which is why you should avoid them for a few days as you heal. By sticking to soft foods, you won’t have to chew as much and you will still be getting plenty of nutrition.
For example, soup broth is a great thing to have after the dental implant process. The broth will be warm and soothing for the inside of your mouth and, more than that, the broth is full of important nutrients that can help speed along your healing process. Keep in mind that the broth should be warm and not hot, otherwise, you might end up burning the inside of your mouth which wouldn’t be ideal.
If you don’t have any broth on hand, mashed potatoes might be the perfect alternative. Mashed potatoes are full of carbohydrates which will give your body more energy to heal itself. They are also very soft and you shouldn’t need to chew them very much.
Again, you should not eat them if you know that they are still hot. Instead, wait for them to cool down before taking a bite.
The process of eating after dental implants will become easier and easier as you heal. The first few days will be the most difficult because your mouth will be very sensitive. As such, you will only be able to eat a select few soft foods that were discussed above.
However, after your first week of healing, you should be able to expand your diet. Keep in mind that you should never skip meals while your dental implants heal. Some people do this because it is too uncomfortable to eat or they think it will speed along the healing process, but this is not true.
Skipping meals will deprive your body of the nutrients and energy that it needs to heal. After the first week of healing, you will be able to graduate from foods like smoothies and soup to foods that you can lightly chew. Keep in mind that you should not go straight for peanuts, toast, or other hard, crunchy foods.
Instead, you will want to stick with foods that are still relatively soft but require a bit more effort to consume. Pasta is a great example. Pasta is still soft but you will need to chew the noodles somewhat.
Doing this should not irritate your dental implants. They will have healed enough after a week to withstand some light chewing. You should also not have any numbness in your mouth anymore which will make it safer to eat various foods.
Rice is another good idea. Rice is very soft and you can add whatever flavors you like to it. Keep in mind that you should not eat meat yet at this point, as tempting as it may be.
By one week, your dental implants will not have healed enough to tackle meat.
When can you go back to eating the food you’re used to eating, you ask? Usually, by around 2 weeks, you should be able to go back to eating most types of food. However, this isn’t the same for everyone since people may heal at different rates.
If you don’t think your implants have healed enough by 2 weeks, you should wait a bit longer to incorporate tougher foods back into your diet. Otherwise, you might end up damaging your implants and your mouth. You should also avoid chewing too much on the side of your mouth.
Once your mouth heals, you will be able to reincorporate most foods. For example, you should have no problem eating meat again and even tough raw vegetables. Of course, you shouldn’t be too careless with what you eat since your implants will still be healing.
You should still avoid chewing on very hard foods such as hard candy, peanuts, and ice.
What can you eat after getting a dental implant, you ask? It depends on how much your implant has healed. At first, you should stick to foods that you don’t need to chew.
After a few weeks, you should be able to eat pasta, vegetables, and meat again. To learn more about dental implants, contact us here.