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How to Eat After Oral Surgery


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The idea of dental surgery procedures such as wisdom teeth removal, regular tooth extractions, or dental implant placement can be unsettling. However, with proper preparation, you can have a smooth experience and a quick recovery.

One easy way to prepare for significant dental surgery is to stock your fridge and pantry with soft foods beforehand. Always stick to your dentist’s or oral surgeon’s post-op instructions to prevent infection and speed up the recovery time. Here are some types of oral surgery and ideas on what foods to eat after oral surgery or significant dental work.


Sometimes, the dental problem you are dealing with may require surgical procedures to treat. Todays techniques have been refined to promote better healing and long-lasting oral health. Dentists and oral surgeons work with you to make the process as comfortable as possible.

Common oral surgery procedures include:

  • Dental implant installation
  • Tooth extractions or wisdom teeth removal
  • Bone and gum grafting
  • Corrective jaw surgery
  • Root canal therapy
  • Surgery to repair damage from trauma

When & What to Eat After Treatment

For common oral surgeries such as wisdom teeth extraction, impacted tooth removal, or root canal therapy, you’ll be able to slowly begin reintroducing some crunchy, fibrous foods back into your diet at around one week post-operation. However, in complicated dental cases such as dental implant placement or having multiple teeth removed at once, you may have to stick with liquid or soft foods for six weeks or more.

Here are some soft foods to eat after oral surgery or significant dental work:

  • Apple sauce
  • Yogurt
  • Jell-O
  • Soups
  • Eggs
  • Mashed fruits like bananas or avocados
  • Fish
  • Rice
  • Well-cooked vegetables
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Oatmeal
  • Popsicles
  • Well-cooked pasta
  • Smoothies (avoid seeds)
  • Pudding
  • Soft peas
  • Beans
  • Ice Cream
  • Milkshakes (use a spoon, not a straw)
  • Soup-soaked bread
  • Soft cheeses
  • Hummus
  • Meatloaf
  • Tofu
  • Cottage cheese
  • Chicken salad or Tuna (no celery)
  • Deli meats


In addition to these soft foods, be sure to drink lots of water. If bleeding persists after an hour following surgery, consider biting on a cool, wet black tea bag to assist with blood clotting.

Rinsing your mouth with water during the first 24 hours is okay, but rinse gently. After 24 hours, you can rinse with warm salty water. You can make the rinse yourself by mixing one tablespoon of salt with a single cup of warm water. Don’t attempt to dislodge any blood clots since this can prolong the healing process.


You will likely feel some level of pain and discomfort after oral surgery. However, your recovery will be more effective if you drink and eat the right foods. Always follow your dentist’s instructions to reduce the risk of bruising at the surgery site. If you have any questions or concerns about your post-operation diet, be sure to speak to your dentist. Whether it’s an in-office visit or making a phone call, getting professional advice will go a long way in speeding up the healing process and preventing infections!

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