Out of all the solutions to replacing missing teeth, many people prefer dental implants as they have the most natural appearance and can last for decades if taken care of with proper dental hygiene.
The average recovery period for implants is about 4 weeks. Throughout this period, you need to be extra careful about taking care of your implants. This solution is considered the most convenient and permanent because it costs you a hefty amount of money.
Here are some tips that are recommended by our doctors to help you adjust to eating with your newly installed dental implants:
Foods that you CAN eat:
Yes, you can eat right after your surgery, but keep in mind that your gums are probably tender and swollen as well. You might experience these symptoms for the first few days post-surgery.
So, it is important that you center your diet around soft foods and liquids as your main source of nutrition, especially during the initial 24-48 hours when your gums are most sensitive and vulnerable.
Before heading into the surgery, head to the grocery store and buy the necessary items that you need. Although you might be very tempted to have ice cream for every single meal, you should stack your pantry and fridge with healthy dietary choices that maintain a balance of proteins, and carbohydrates, and fats.
There is a special focus on the importance of ingesting protein after surgery to help the body fight infections and repair tissues that have been affected by dental implant surgery. When you eat more protein than you normally would, then you are therefore increasing your body’s healing abilities.
Your diet should include items like puréed soups, mashed potatoes, mashed bananas, applesauce, pudding, oatmeal, scrambled eggs, Greek yogurt, tofu, protein shakes, juices, etc.
Foods that you CANNOT eat:
On the other hand, there are certain foods that you should avoid immediately following the placement of your dental implants as they can irritate the implant site, compromise bone fusion, and sometimes even pull the implant away from the gums.
These foods include spicy (hot peppers and salsa), crunchy (popcorn, chips, and nuts), hot (coffee, tea, and soup), acidic (tomatoes and oranges), sticky (taffy and gum).
In the weeks following the placement of your dental implant after your jaw and gums started to heal, you can start reintroducing solid foods that are healthy and balanced back into your diet.
These foods include proteins (eggs, omelets, chicken, fish, ground beef, and turkey), healthy carbs (sweet potatoes, bananas, oats, and blueberries), healthy fats (avocadoes, edamame, and olives), and dairy (cheese, yogurt, and cottage cheese).
Although your teeth now after a few weeks of the surgery can handle foods harder than mashed potatoes, it is still recommended that you don’t go all out just yet as they can still cause damage to your implants. The same rule applies to spicy, hot, acidic, and sticky foods; you should wait for your dentist’s permission before you don’t have to eliminate foods from your diet.
Going back to your normal life:
Once your implant integrates well with your jawbone and your doctor says it is strong enough to place the new set of prosthetic teeth, you will have your permanent crowns finally placed.
By arriving at this stage, you can now enjoy life to the fullest, even way better than the pre-surgery era when you had missing teeth!
Following the dieting protocols post-surgery:
It is very important to stick to post-operative instructions and guidelines provided by your dentist after getting your dental implants placed.
Otherwise, the pain will be exacerbated, and you will experience many complications such as excessive bleeding, swelling, infection, or you can even suffer from dental implant failure. All of this will only prolong the healing process for you.
Ask yourself, “Is it worth the pain and waiting?” and I am sure your answer will be, “No.”
If you are unsure about some details of the food and dieting protocols or have questions that you want to be answered, then do not hesitate you contact your dental care provider.
And do not let the post-surgery expectations discourage you from getting your dental implants. Remember, it is only a matter of time following the surgery that you must be extra careful about maintaining the success of the surgery and then when have your permanent crowns placed, you will be able to eat normally again.
Eating right is just one way to protect and take care of your dental implants, but there are many other requirements to maintain the good results you desire.
Be sure to follow everything written on the post-operation documentation you receive from your dentist, as it can be a determining factor in how satisfied you are with the outcome.