One of the most significant benefits of dental implants is that once healed they do not carry any dietary restrictions. However, the days and weeks after your surgery, you will be required to avoid certain types of foods to protect your new implants.
The Recovery Process and What to Expect After Dental Implant Surgery
At Metrolina Periodontics & Dental Implants, Dr. Ficca believes in fully educating every patient about their procedures to ensure they can decide what is best for them. Part of that education includes information regarding the recovery process and what to expect after dental implant surgery.
- Take time to rest – you will not need to be down long, but the day of and the day after your surgery should be days of rest.
- Practice proper oral hygiene – you will be provided with a detailed schedule for when and how you should perform oral hygiene after dental implant surgery. Be sure to follow it.
- Stay hydrated – one of the biggest keys to recovery is hydration. Be sure to drink plenty of water in the days after your surgery, but avoid using a straw as the sucking motion could disturb your incision sites.
- Minor bleeding and swelling are expected – minor bleeding and swelling should be expected immediately after surgery. Use ice packs to reduce swelling and gauze to control bleeding. If you experience excessive bleeding or swelling, call our office and let us know.
Can I Eat Immediately After Dental Implants and If So What Can I Eat?
Yes! You can eat immediately after your dental implants are placed. However, remember that your gums will be tender and slightly swollen for a few days after your surgery. Because of this, you should stick to soft foods or liquids immediately after your procedure.
What Can I Eat Within the Initial 24-48 Hours?
During the first 24-48 hours after your dental implants are placed, you should be careful only to eat soft foods or liquids to protect your vulnerable gums.
Here is What You Can Eat
Start your recovery off right by preparing your pantry and refrigerator with healthy dietary choices before your surgery day. Even though you may be tempted to eat ice cream at every meal, Dr. Ficca recommends you maintain a healthy balance of proteins, carbohydrates, and fats during your recovery period.
- Water or flavored water
- Fruit or vegetable juices
- Bone broths
- Protein shakes
- Puréed soup
- Greek yogurt
- Mashed potatoes
- Scrambled eggs
- Mashed bananas
- Herbal tea
- Cottage cheese
- Instant oatmeal
- Flaky fish
Foods to Avoid
Immediately following the placement of your dental implants, your gums will be tender and swollen. Additionally, your implants will be inserted through tiny incisions in your gums. To protect your gums during this time, it is important to avoid eating foods that are:
- Spicy – hot peppers or hot salsa
- Crunchy – popcorn, chips, and nuts
- Hot – coffee, tea, and hot soup
- Acidic – tomatoes and oranges
- Sticky – taffy and gum
The Weeks Following Surgery
In the weeks following the placement of your dental implants, your jaw and gums will continue to heal, and you will be able to start reintroducing more solid foods into your diet. Remember, continue to make healthy, balanced choices to encourage healing.
Here is What You Can Eat
As your diet slowing grows, consider eating foods such as:
- Proteins – eggs, omelets, chicken, fish, ground beef, turkey
- Healthy carbohydrates – sweet potatoes, bananas, oats, blueberries
- Healthy fats – avocados, nut butters, edamame, olives
- Dairy – cheese, yogurt, cottage cheese, protein shakes
Food to Avoid
Dr. Ficca recommends dental implants patients continue to avoid hard, crunchy, spicy, acidic, or sticky foods in the weeks after the placement of their dental implants. You should only begin eating these foods once Dr. Ficca releases you to do so.
After Final Placement of Permanent Crowns
This is when you can get back to enjoying life to the fullest! Dr. Ficca works closely with your dentist to expedite the restoration and placement of your final set of prosthetic teeth. Once Dr. Ficca confirms that the implant and bone are strong enough and your dentist places the new tooth, you will be free to resume your normal diet and enjoy your new teeth!
Risks of Not Following Food and Dieting Protocols After Implant Surgery?
As with any surgical procedure, it is important to follow the post-operative instructions provided by Dr. Ficca after the placement of your dental implants. If you do not, you could experience complications such as excessive bleeding, excessive swelling, pain, infection, or even dental implant failure. If you have questions regarding the food and dieting protocols after implant surgery, do not hesitate to call Metrolina Periodontics & Dental Implants, and a member of our knowledgeable team will be happy to help you.
Will I Ever Be Able to Eat Normally Again?
The answer to this question is a resounding, YES! As we have mentioned, one of the best benefits of dental implants is the fact that you will be able to eat normally once your dental implants have healed and your final set of prosthetic teeth have been placed. You will have no dietary restrictions, and you will be able to eat anything you want without fear or anxiety!
Eating Right is Just One Way to Take Care of Your Implants
While eating right is important during your recovery after the placement of your dental implants, it is not the only thing you can do to ensure success. Be sure to follow everything listed on the post-operation documentation provided by Dr. Ficca and his team. This will include resting, proper oral hygiene, pain management, and addressing possible bleeding and swelling after surgery. Properly taking care of your gums and dental implants after surgery will help ensure your procedure is a success and that your teeth last a lifetime.
Think You Are a Candidate for Dental Implants? Consult with Your Local Periodontist
If you have loose, missing, or damaged teeth and believe dental implants may be right for you, call our office in Charlotte today at (704) 544-2224 to schedule your initial consultation with Dr. Ficca. During your appointment, he will perform a full evaluation, take any needed X-rays, including 3-D cone beam CT scans or images, and explain how dental implants could uniquely benefit you.