What foods can I eat after a tooth extraction?

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Tooth pain can be intrusive, inconvenient, and stressful. In some cases, finding relief means a tooth extraction procedure. Dental issues or damaged teeth that go untreated can negatively impact a person's overall oral health, resulting in tooth loss. Tooth extraction is relatively common for adults, even with permanent teeth. Read on to learn more about tooth extraction recovery and what dietary restrictions you may have from our team of dental experts at Byers Station Dental in Chester Springs, PA.

What is a tooth extraction procedure?

Tooth extraction is generally an outpatient procedure performed by an oral surgeon or dentist with either general, local, intravenous anesthesia, or a combination. While visible teeth are generally a simple extraction, ones that are broken, decayed, below the gumline, or impacted may require a more involved treatment. The following are reasons why patients may need a tooth removed:

  • Tooth damage due to an accident or trauma
  • Gum disease or advanced periodontal disease
  • Tooth decay or infection
  • Overcrowded teeth or insufficient space

What should I know about tooth extraction recovery?

Whether you need to address problematic teeth, wisdom teeth, or other oral health concerns, full recovery from tooth extraction may take a couple of weeks. However, Chester Springs, PA patients will begin to feel better with each passing day. Once the tooth is removed, a blood clot will form in the socket. It will be packed with gauze to stop the bleeding. During tooth extraction recovery, it is vital to take special care during this time to allow for proper healing to occur. Our dentists at Byers Station Dental recommend these general guidelines:

  • Avoid spitting, rinsing, or drinking from a straw for 24 hours
  • Keep the gauze in place for about 3 – 4 hours afterward
  • Take pain relief as prescribed
  • Rest and limit physical activity for at least 24 – 48 hours
  • No smoking or alcohol
  • Continue brushing and flossing, avoiding the extraction site
  • Rinse with a salt solution 24 hours after the procedure

How long after tooth extraction can I eat?

Even after losing one or several teeth, patients must still get the right nutrition. A nutritious diet during tooth extraction recovery minimizes the risk of complications and aids in the healing process. However, patients must be cautious about how and what they eat. It is important after tooth extraction, whether simple or complex, to avoid eating hard or chewy foods. Depending on the severity of the treatment, patients may be allowed to start on liquid or soft foods a few hours afterward. Some recommended dietary items are:

  • Broths or blended soups, like pumpkin or tomato
  • Instant oatmeal
  • Yogurt or cottage cheese
  • Scrambled eggs
  • Bananas
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Applesauce
  • Smoothies
  • Hummus or avocados
  • Salmon

At Byers Station Dental, our dental team will provide a thorough dental examination to determine whether you need a tooth extraction procedure or what steps need to be taken to resolve your dental issue. If you are experiencing tooth pain or have a dental concern, contact our office in Chester Springs, PA to schedule an appointment today.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.