If you discovered this article, you may be about to get your wisdom teeth removed and are wondering what in the world you’re supposed to eat. On the other hand, you may have just had your wisdom teeth extracted and are bored of the same two or three foods already, so you want a few more ideas of what you can eat in the days following oral surgery. Don’t worry: your diet can be more diverse than you think!
After getting wisdom teeth removed, most folks are limited to liquid foods for a little while (the amount of time differs with each person). Your appetite will likely be lessened during the healing process. Eventually, you can move on to a diet of soft foods and then progress to chewing. After my oral surgery, I stuck to soft and liquid foods for the better part of two weeks, but I started trying to chew again about 7 days after surgery. I’ll never forget going to Kabuki Japanese Steakhouse for a birthday party nine days after my surgery; I attempted to eat steak and veggies very, very slowly. My mouth felt exhausted after dinner! After that, I went back to softer foods, like pasta and pancakes, for a while longer. Even so, I started with soft foods like pasta and pancakes.
It was at least 3-4 weeks before I could get my mouth around any large sandwich or hamburger. Other people can start eating solid foods within 3-7 days, especially those who get their wisdom teeth removed while they’re still teenagers or in their early 20s. Tip: be sure to never drink out of a straw during the entire recovery process after getting your oral surgery. It’s an easy thing to forget but a sure way to disturb the blood clots before your gum has healed, which will leave you with an unpleasant dry socket.
Below are diet lists to help you determine what foods to eat and what not to eat for the first week or so after surgery.
- Ensure ® or some other nutrition drink to make sure you still get your vitamins and essentials
- Any Drink – water, milk, sodas, etc.
- Pudding & Jello
- Softened ice cream & sherbert – without anything crunchy mixed in, of course
- Soups and broths – without any chewy veggies or meat
- Mashed potatoes
- Cottage cheese
- Macaroni and cheese – cut in smaller pieces
- Pastas – made simply, without meat and chopped up finely; this category can be narrowed down to a variety of flavors, including pasta with marinara, pasta with alfredo, Ramen Noodles, Italian-based or Mayonnaise-based pasta salads (only eat the noodles finely chopped)
- Scrambled eggs – chopped up finely
- Peach slices in syrup – chopped up finely
- Baby food – not something I personally tried, but heard others suggest it
While my mouth was healing, my favorite foods were smoothies and raspberry sherbert with chocolate syrup! If all you can eat is soft food, why not indulge in as much ice cream as you want?
- Anything chewy – meats, sandwiches, whole fruits, veggies
- Most snack and junk foods, like chips, cookies, and candies
- Peanut butter – too sticky for sore jaws to manage, plus it would be difficult to wash out of the holes that you will have in your mouth
- Rice – tends to be stickier than pasta, requires a little more chewing, and it can more easily get stuck in the holes in your mouth
- Oatmeal – gets easily stuck in the holes
- Anything acidic – it can hurt while your gums are still healing
Things like rice and oatmeal are better eaten some time after you are able to start rinsing your mouth out with a syringe. As you are able to eventually start chewing again, add the least chewy foods to your diet first and work your way toward the most chewy foods. You’ll be back to a normal eating schedule before you know it!
You will likely be doing a lot of sleeping after your oral surgery, so feel free to refer back to this article at any time to refresh your memory on these tips!