What to Eat After Dental Surgery

If you have had dental surgery recently or are planning on having a dental surgical procedure soon, you may be thinking about what you should eat afterward. Procedures such as general tooth extractions, wisdom teeth removal, gum graft surgery, root canals, and dental implants are unsettling but being prepared can help you smoothly move into the healing process after the procedure. It’s important to protect the area that has experienced trauma by being cut, opened, and sutured. Post-surgical care is imperative.

One way to protect your mouth and to help it heal is by eating the right foods. Having soft foods in your fridge and pantry will make you more prepared for the recovery. Your Fuquay-Varina dentist and team at Hamby Family Dental have guided many patients through the recuperation phase of dental surgery. In this article, we provide information on the importance of eating soft foods and which foods are the best to eat after dental surgery.

Soft Foods are Required

After your dental procedure, your jaw and mouth more than likely feel sore. Soft foods will reduce irritation on an open wound and will avoid biting on the tooth or area that has been treated. You may think initially that eating only soft foods is highly limiting, but we have a long list of the best foods that don’t require much chewing—and, by “best” we mean foods that are both nutritious and tasty. After dental surgery, your primary objectives are:

  • Get proper nutrition
  • Protect the surgical area
  • Heal correctly
  • Stay comfortable

Specific Soft Foods to Eat

Here are some ideas for soft foods that don’t require chewing:

  • Soups and broths
  • Smoothies
  • Yogurt without berry seeds
  • Cottage cheese
  • Mashed bananas
  • Mashed potatoes, cauliflower, avocado, carrots
  • Scrambled eggs
  • Oatmeal blended with a banana
  • Applesauce and other fruit or vegetable purees
  • Casseroles
  • Dips such as hummus, French onion, and guacamole to eat alone on other foods
  • Nut butters
  • Ramen noodles
  • Tofu
  • Doughnuts, muffins, or cupcakes
  • Ice cream, pudding, and Jello
  • Well-cooked pasta
  • Ground beef and soft fish
  • Tuna or chicken salad without celery
  • Steamed or roasted vegetables

Temperature of Food

Additionally, the temperature of the foods you eat can affect the healing process. Foods that are too hot will irritate the gum tissue surrounding the surgery area and disturb the healing process. Drink warm drinks and eat warm soup—not hot ones.

Soft Foods that Promote Healing

Be sure that you get protein and consume a balanced diet to help your body heal. Protein is an important building block that helps to repair muscle, tissue, and skin. Consider these nutritious options for soft foods:

  • Soups with chicken or beef broth – excellent sources of protein
  • Protein powder mixed with water, juice, or milk – an easy way to get more protein
  • Mashed avocado – rich in healthy fats
  • Peaches, strawberries, raspberries – easy to chew and high in Vitamin C

Ideas for Meals Throughout the Day

You don’t have to eat the same thing for every meal. Here are some ideas for healthy alternatives after dental surgery:


  • Oatmeal or cream of wheat
  • Low-sugar yogurt
  • Soft scrambled eggs
  • Cottage cheese
  • Soft cheeses


  • Soups without meat such as lentil soup or green pea soup
  • Butternut squash
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Well-cooked pasta
  • Chicken or tuna salad without celery


  • Steamed soft vegetables like peas or squash
  • Tilapia or other soft white fish
  • Clams
  • Grits, polenta, or couscous
  • Ground beef

Foods Not to Eat After Dental Procedures

We recommend refraining from these foods and beverages after dental surgery:

  • Avoid caffeine, carbonation, alcohol, and hot beverages
  • Do not drink from a straw for several days because the sucking can dislodge blood that is clotting in the socket, causing a “dry socket”
  • Do not eat spicy foods because they can irritate the gums
  • Do not eat acidic foods because they can irritate the surgical site
  • Do not eat foods with seeds that can become lodged in the wound area
  • Do not smoke for at least 24 hours after tooth removal because it can cause a “dry socket”

When You Can Eat Normally

Some dental procedures require eating soft foods for a longer period than other procedures. After surgery, your dentist will provide you with specific instructions for your recovery.

Contact Us Today to Schedule Your Dental Appointment

Our team of dental professionals at Hamby Family Dental Center is experienced with performing dental surgeries and can help you to heal properly afterward. Contact us today for any dental issues. We can prevent dental problems from occurring as well as perform procedures that fix problems and get you on the road to a healthy mouth. Call us at 919-552-2431 or fill out the form below to get started.

  • By submitting this form, you are consenting to our privacy policy.