Cavities, loss of tooth enamel, gum diseases, sensitivity, and many dental issues have become more common nowadays. The reasons could be the changed diet, increased reliance on fast foods, including sugary drinks and sweets, poor oral hygiene, etc. Also, there is the never-fading hype for cosmetic dental procedures. Thus we might end up in a dentist’s chair for many reasons. Though medical technology in dentistry has made it simple and less painless, it is the responsibility of the patients to take care of their teeth and gums post-surgery or treatment. They should keep in mind that a nutritious diet speeds up the healing process. At the same time, it may not be dull and tasteless too. So, lets us check out how to add variety to the food and lessen the discomfort after going through a dental procedure.
Diet for the first 2-3 days
On the day of surgery, you cannot chew or even swallow. The sedation dentist might ask you not to have solid, semi-solid food and dairy products for six hours before surgery. One might have the effects of medication for 24 hours after the procedure. Many experience swelling and some even have slight bleeding too. It is advisable not to have any fluids for at least an hour after your discharge from the hospital. You could start with small quantities of clear liquids like water, plain juices, soda, etc. You should avoid sucking or using straws. It might lead to increased sores on your lips. On day two, one can start having milkshakes, protein drinks, etc. You can also have pureed items, gelatin, and smoothies. But make sure that the food gives you the right balance of carbohydrates, proteins, fats, vitamins, and minerals. People having difficulties in swallowing or moving their jaws can have nectar-like fluid that flows easily.
Diet for the first few weeks
It is advisable to stick to soft food until your mouth heals completely. In normal cases, people can start having soft and easily digestible food by day three. You can have bone broths and Greek yogurt. They are a rich source of minerals like calcium, zinc that aid the healing process. Mashed potatoes give the additional energy as you feel tired and weak after surgery.
Similarly, scrambled eggs are a source of omega-3 fatty acids, high-quality protein, and minerals. Instead of frying and roasting vegetables, you can boil and mash them. You can smash pumpkins, carrots, add some cheese, or combine them with soft instant oatmeal. Fruits like apple, banana, and avocado could be mashed and added with ice-cream to have a delicious dessert. You can make sauces and puree with fruits and eat them with soft pancakes. Slowly you can start having portions of macaroni, mushrooms, hummus, and even fish. If you wish to make things tastier, you could add cottage cheese to almost everything, right from soups to pasta.
Must-include food items
Soups and smoothies are a must-have for anyone after having dental treatment. Soups are a great source of vitamins and minerals. They keep you hydrated too. You can have them lukewarm and well-blended. There should not be any solid chunks, as it is difficult to swallow them. It need not always be veggies like carrot, cabbage, or pumpkin; you can even grind lentils, peanuts, and add to your protein count. Healthy soups give you instant energy and give your immune system a boost. But for a few days after your dental treatment, you need to make the soups less spicy.
Smoothies can be super tasty and nutritious too. You can add kale, spinach, berries, yogurt, cucumber, lemon, banana, etc. A pinch of turmeric with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties does help you naturally ease your swellings. Cottage cheese, silken tofu, ground legumes can be the protein source. Nut butter, powdered chia or flax seeds, avocado can supplement the fat component. There can be endless varieties of nutritious smoothies, and you can try out different combinations at such times.
Crunchy food chips, cookies, pizza are a big no for the first week after your dental procedure. It is better not to have spicy and acidic ones too. They can hurt your wounds and increase soreness. Returning to regular food depends on the dental procedure you had and the speed of your recovery. For example, it takes around ten days for the pain to go away after wisdom teeth removal. Dental implants and root canal treatment might need a few weeks.
It is essential to remember that post-operation, the quicker way to normalcy, is by following the guidelines properly. One needs to prepare mentally and have a plan ahead to have tasty and healthy food. So, you could try including soups, soft boiled food even before the dental procedure. It is better to be rid of the misconception that only junk and fast foods taste good. Remember, switching to a healthy diet benefits you for your entire life.