Can I eat regular foods after getting dental implants?
A dental implant is a modern solution for tooth loss with plenty of benefits. They not only will prevent bone loss, enhance self-esteem and keep the patient’s facial structure. It will also let the user eat all their favorite foods, without restrictions.
First Few Days
A dental implant procedure begins with the placement of metallic posts in the jawbone through incisions in the gums that will work as a tooth root. Some bleeding is common after surgery, and the patient’s gums will be tender and swollen. However, one hour after the surgery the gauze sponges previously placed can be taken out and the patient can resume a conservative and adequate diet.
Since the gums and bone are weak and delicate after the surgery it is advisable to abide by a diet with soft foods and liquids. During the first few days after the surgery, some precautions should be taken, such as avoiding alcoholic drinks, smoking, drinks that are too cold or too hot, or drinking with a straw since the suction required could harm the incisions and could irritate the gums. Following these instructions will help protect your mouth during the initial healing phase.
Since the first day after the surgery, the patient must eat something. A balanced nutrition is key to a successful healing process, and even though the patient might feel uncomfortable, meals should not be skipped. There are a lot of options to maintain a balance of nutrients during this process, such as cold soups, smoothies, milkshakes, mashed potatoes, instant oatmeal, greek yogurt, scrambled eggs, water (of course), and other similar foods.
The Weeks After
A diet with soft foods should remain from 7-10 days, or more depending on the recovery process for each patient, but as the weeks progress, the patient will be able to start introducing solids in the diet. This doesn’t mean that everything is recommendable and a healthy diet is still important. Here are some examples of what can be eaten.
Proteins can be consumed such as chicken, fish, eggs and ground beef. Carbohydrates can be found on pasta, bananas, sweet potatoes, etc. Healthy fats can be helpful during the recovery and you can get them through avocados, nut butter, olives, etc. Calcium is another crucial nutrient and can be found in cheese, yogurt and cottage cheese. All of them are different solids that can be introduced little by little in your diet, such as chicken in your soup or pieces of meat in the sauce.
The Importance of Protein
Protein is a main component of the healing process and will not only help heal tissues affected during the surgery but can also help fight possible infections.
Food to Avoid
After the surgical procedure not only will your gums be swollen and tender but your jawbone is also vulnerable. This is why you need to protect them by letting them heal properly and prevent future complications. Avoid spicy, tough, crunchy, acidic, sticky and grainy food, but also hot drinks such as coffee and tea.
How to proceed after the crown is placed?
Placing the crown is the last step of the procedure, and after it is done there won’t be restrictions or limitations to what you can eat. This will happen after the implant has healed completely. However, the patient should be aware of the importance of oral health, and that the crown will last a long time with proper care. Brushing your teeth, flossing regularly, avoiding chewing or biting tough things, and going to your dentist appointments are some examples of how to take good care of your implants.
Why diet protocols are important?
Having a proper diet during the healing process will help your body heal faster and will give you enough energy to carry on with your daily activities. Not following your dentist’s recommendations, or not having a proper diet could harm your gums and bones. Eating hard foods will apply pressure that the implant and the bone are not ready to tolerate and it could end with implant failure. Also, if a piece of food gets stuck in your mouth it could lead to infections. Not following proper diet protocols could really complicate the recovery process.
Check if you are a potential implant candidate
It is always important to follow your dentist’s instructions to prevent dental implant failure. Be sure you are treated by experienced professionals who will guide you through the whole process. Schedule a consultation with an Esteem professional near you.