Skip to main content

Foods to Avoid Eating After an Extraction

Foods to Avoid Eating After an Extraction

Nobody wants a tooth extraction, but in some cases, it’s necessary. For example, you may have extensive decay, a rampant infection, or a tooth growing in the wrong direction. Whatever the reason for the extraction, the rules for what you should and shouldn’t do afterward remain the same.

Our experienced providers at Hometown Family Dental Centers offer top-notch services for the whole family. With convenient locations in Fayetteville, Raeford, and Vass, North Carolina, we understand that sometimes a tooth is so damaged it has to go. Patients wonder, though, what they’ll be able to eat after the procedure. Here’s what the experts have to say.

Types of extractions

Depending on your circumstances, you can have either a simple or surgical extraction.

In a simple extraction, we remove a visible tooth. We numb the tooth and surrounding gum tissue, then loosen the tooth with an elevator tool. Finally, we remove the tooth with dental forceps.

A surgical extraction is more complex because the tooth may not be visible. We use this procedure when a tooth snaps off at the gum line or hasn’t yet erupted into the mouth. During a surgical extraction, we make a small incision in the gum tissue to access the root and remove the tooth through that incision.

Basic aftercare

We provide complete aftercare instructions, but there are some general things you should know before the procedure.

The most important thing to do following an extraction is to keep the area clean and prevent infection. You start immediately following the procedure by biting down gently on a piece of dry, sterile gauze for 30-45 minutes. The pressure helps to limit bleeding and allows a clot to form in the socket.

It’s very important not to disturb the clot, so don’t smoke or drink through a straw for at least 24 hours after the procedure. If the clot comes loose, you may develop dry socket, a painful condition that requires further treatment. You also shouldn’t rinse your mouth vigorously or clean the area next to the extraction site.

Foods to avoid (and foods to eat) after an extraction

Having a tooth extracted affects what you can eat, and what you eat can help promote healing and decrease your risk of complications following the procedure.

After a tooth extraction, you’ll need to maintain a balanced and nutritious diet, as it’s necessary for healing, maintaining a sense of well-being, and reducing discomfort. It should contain fruits, vegetables, starches, high-protein foods, and healthy fats, but the specifics depend on how you’re feeling.

Tenderness and swelling are common following an extraction, so you might be too uncomfortable to handle even soft foods. If that’s the case, stick to a liquid diet until you feel better.

As your mouth begins to heal, you should be able to enjoy a soft diet composed of foods that are easy to chew and swallow. You may want to chop or ground food into small pieces or puree them in a blender before eating.

High-protein foods are also important, helping to balance the diet and increase healing speed. If you can't tolerate anything more solid, you can add protein to smoothies and pureed soups.

Some foods can interfere with the clotting process or otherwise irritate the wound site. Try to avoid:

And while tobacco isn’t a food, and while we’ve mentioned this before, it bears repeating: don’t smoke or use other tobacco products, as they harm your overall health and interfere with the healing process.

Want more tips on foods to eat/avoid after an extraction? Need a tooth removed? Contact Hometown Family Dental Centers. Call us at the nearest office or request an appointment online.

You Might Also Enjoy...

Do Wisdom Teeth Have to Be Removed?

Do Wisdom Teeth Have to Be Removed?

A shared fear surrounds wisdom teeth — the fear they need to be extracted. While many people do have them extracted, it’s not a given. Here’s what you need to know.

Why Do Teeth Lose Their Whiteness As We Age?

Your mouth changes as you age, and not usually for the better. One problem you can address more easily than the rest is the loss of your teeth’s whiteness. Find out more about age’s effect on your mouth here.
Ways to Avoid Gum Disease

Ways to Avoid Gum Disease

You're at risk for gum disease if you don’t practice good oral hygiene. Fortunately, there are good habits you can develop to avoid it. Here’s more about them.

How Can I Achieve a Hollywood Smile Quickly?

If your grin is discolored, stained, cracked, or chips, and you’re looking for a dazzling, Hollywood-type smile — you’re in luck. We have treatment options to brighten your teeth and shore up your self-confidence quickly.

Foods to Eat for Brighter, Healthier Teeth

Your diet may be the forgotten secret to a dazzling, bright smile. While brushing, flossing, and dental checkups are essential, the foods you eat also affect the color of your teeth.