When a tooth extraction is necessary for your oral health, you might find yourself wondering how long it can be until you can eat again afterwards.
Of course, the answer ultimately depends on the guidance you’ll be given by your dental team for after-extraction care, but there are some common recommendations about when you can eat and what you should eat.
Eating After a Tooth Extraction
Usually, your dental team will provide guidelines for you to follow about what and when you should eat and drink after your extraction. Most often, diet recommendations focus on liquids and very soft food only on the same day you have your surgery, followed by a transition to your regular diet within a day or two. But there are a few exceptions.
And exactly when you can eat solid foods does depend on both the type and extent of the extraction you’ve undergone.
So, the time you can begin to eat or drink after an extraction really depends on your individual surgery. Your dentist will provide you with that information, but the short answer is you should be able to eat within a few hours following your surgery.
A few hours after the extraction you can have foods such as:
Soft foods that need only little or no chewing
These kinds of soft foods include:
- Ice cream/pudding
- Cold Soup
No Straws Allowed
One definite no-no is using a straw when drinking any liquids after you have an extraction. Why? Because the suction a straw creates could dislodge the healing blood clot covering your extraction site. If that happens, you could experience delayed healing or even more pain and bleeding.
It’s also important to avoid hot liquids like very hot soup in the first days after surgery. Heat can also loosen the clot, increase blood flow, and increase bleeding.
Adding Foods on the 2nd or 3rd Day After Extraction
On the second or third day after your extraction, although you should continue having liquids and soft foods as much as possible, you can begin to add in other kinds of food - just avoid chewing on the side of your mouth where your surgery took place.
Also, try to keep foods soft, so that you won’t have to chew excessively, to avoid food particles that could stay in your mouth and impact healing.
Avoid Drinking Alcohol
One thing you shouldn’t do is to drink any alcohol for at least 24 to 48 hours after surgery. The reason: alcohol can interact with prescribed post-extraction medications, and it can also delay your healing.
Healing Continues for 1-2 Weeks
Healing will continue for around one to two weeks after your surgery. During this time, as much as possible, continue to try to avoid chewing any food on the extraction site, so you won’t disrupt healing. But, you can start transitioning to your usually consumed foods. Just be sure to chew carefully.
A few exceptions: avoid spicy or acidic foods until your extraction site is healed completely, so you won’t irritate the site of your extraction. Also, avoid any crunchy or sticky food types, which can potentially dislodge the healing clot if they are chewed close to the site of the extraction.
Good Oral Hygiene Assists Healing
Along with the foods you eat, good dental hygiene is very helpful for your healing post-extraction. Be sure to follow your dental team’s guidelines before starting your regular daily dental care, however.
Ready to Learn More About Extractions?
If you’re ready to learn more about extractions, schedule an appointment, or discuss your oral health options, reach out to us today! We are here and ready to help.