Do I Need to Change my Diet After Having Dental Implants?
Dental implants are a great way to revitalise your smile, but as with all surgical treatments, it’s important to consider aftercare. After getting a dental implant, your teeth will be in a delicate state, so it’s important to follow a carefully considered diet in the days and weeks that follow. If your implant hasn’t fully settled, your favourite food might undermine the surgical outcome and hinder your recovery.
The first 48 hours after having a dental implant
Protein is crucial in the formation of new tissue and helps the body fight infection, so make sure you include it in your diet throughout the healing process. In the first day or two after dental implant surgery, you should limit yourself to soft food and liquids such as mashed potatoes, ice cream, soup, smoothies, and protein-rich yoghurts.
Smoothies are a fantastic option for a post-surgery diet, as they can be packed full of nutrients according to your needs, and to add additional protein you can include protein powder, avocado, or peanut butter. But don’t use a straw! The suction will put unwanted pressure on your new implant before it has fully integrated into your jaw.
Whatever you choose to eat or drink, make sure it’s cold, as heat can damage the new implant at this tender stage.
Day 3 – 7 after having a dental implant
After the first couple of days, you can begin to add texture to your diet, but not too much – softness is still key. Some good options include scrambled eggs, soft cheeses, omelettes, well-cooked pasta, and mashed potatoes.
You might also want to reintroduce soft meats such as fish or pâté, along with soft fruits such as oranges or pears. Apples and other firmer fruits can be eaten, but only if blended first. Vegetables ought to be steamed or boiled until easy to chew.
For breakfast, cereals like muesli and oatmeal are a good choice in the period following dental implant surgery, as they are very soft when cooked all the way through.
Week 2 through to 4 after dental implant surgery
Healing can take several weeks, so the introduction of harder, firmer food should be done gradually and with care. Let your mouth guide you – if eating something hurts, your implant isn’t ready for it yet.
As you bring back old favourites, it’s worth considering if lasting changes to your diet might be sensible, especially if you enjoy crunchy, firm, or chewy foods. To protect your new dental implant in the long term, it might be worth removing the most difficult-to-chew items from the list.