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Wisdom teeth removal - Food help!

Hi fellow CHers

I'm getting my wisdom teeth removed in a week and I could use some ideas on what to eat in that magical 3-5 day period afterwards! So far I have ice cream and mashed potatoes....and cheese.

I think there may already be a thread on this, but any suggestions would be very welcome!

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  1. There have been a few threads that you'll be able to find with a quick search.

    To get you started:
    cream of wheat
    pureed soup
    egg salad
    creamed spinach
    mashed avocado

    When I had mine taken out I was in so much pain that I was pretty drugged up for a few days. All I managed for at least the first 48 hours was to get down a some jello or pudding that I had made before going under the knife and then go back to sleep for hours.

    Also, keep in mind that in addition to difficulties in chewing, you may have trouble opening your mouth much. I remember thinking I was going to be able to get an egg salad sandwich on soft bread down, but i couldn't open my jaw enough to get my mouth around the sandwich. I had to squeeze bits through and finally ate the egg salad with a spoon.

    1. Actually, there are several threads I think on this topic! Just search and you'll find.

      I know I was flying high (laughing gas) when I got all 4 of mine out....but I look back on it pretty positively! It allowed me to lose a couple pounds by just sitting around and doing nothing....it was the best diet of my life. I will say my mouth just felt odd for about a week. I didn't really have any pain. Didn't sleep the first night from bleeding (sorry) but everyone's different. The uncomfortable part for me came with the stitches, I'm very sensitive with things in my mouth and they just felt odd there when I was eating or drinking.

      Here was my diet for 1 week:

      Guinness beer. I kid you not. I drank 3 a day. Guinness has a great amount of nutrients and iron, which everyone needs because there's always at least some blood loss. Although, I don't recommend this if you are on medication. Proceed with caution. I was done on my 2nd day so I was able to drink them.

      Shakes. I made every shake that I could think of. Always threw in a banana and peanut butter for extra protein.

      Broth. Had made some chicken and beef broth and basically just drank it throughout the day.

      Applesauce was great for dessert or snack.

      I too had mashed potatoes. Although I also seem to remember they were too stiff and drowned them in gravy. I also remember that I actually *drank* the gravy! Yes, it's true. I must have been starving...

      Whatever you do STAY AWAY FROM SEEDS! You don't want the holes infected.

      Good luck with everything! Stay positive!

      1. Smoothies: frozen bananas, oj, and your choice of frozen blueberries, strawberries, cherries, mango, blackberries, pineapple, etc.

        Carrot juice

        Apple cider

        Almond mylk or hemp mylk


        miso soup

        herbal tea

        5 Replies
        1. re: lgss

          With due respect to Raquel's post above, as a dentist, I cannot recommend the consumption of alcohol. That, along with smoking and drinking through a straw, causing suction, is the most common cause of "dry socket" whereby the protective clot is lost and significant inflammation occurs. Stick to lots of non-alcoholic, nutritious liquids, soups, simple pasta, etc.

          1. re: markabauman

            Thanks for the replies everyone. Lots of great tips, I'm making a 'special' grocery list now!

            1. re: markabauman

              grits and cream of wheat are also able to cause serious issues if one of those grains get down into a socket. Not worth the trouble. I'd also stay away from strawberries and blackberries. Lots of little seedy things in those. Mashed taters, mac& cheese. Day 1 for me was pudding only. (Enzymes in yogurt are used to tenderize meat. - Yogurt will STING if any touches the wounds.)

              Chopped up cooked chicken into very small pieces, and mixed it into mashed potatoes on day 2. Able to swallow without chewing, and it really felt like good, substantial food. Luckily after a few days, I was able to open my mouth wide enough to eat semi normally (no big sandwiches, or burgers - just normal fork foods.) After about a week, I was completely back to normal. From what I hear about "dry sockets," you want to do anything and everything to avoid them.

              1. re: markabauman

                Actually, it was my surgeon that recommended the Guinness, doc! So, why no alcohol? I don't get how that could lead to "dry socket" and I was quite well aware of that problem; I never did use a straw for anything and am a non-smoker. As far as I know, alcohol wouldn't do that... But please, do tell.

              2. re: lgss

                I had 3 removed one afternoon and returned to work the next morning.
                I was cautious but ate quite normally at once.
                The 4 th. tooth is still in place terribly impacted but for 40 years has been no problem.
                People experience this sort of thing differently.
                I found the extractions like 2 root canals, nothing at all.
                Hope you do as well.

                1. I ate...
                  ice cream
                  mashed potatos (I made a HUGE batch the night before)
                  banana shakes (NO berries--the seeds can get stuck in your socket)
                  cream-based pureed soups

                  That was the first few days, after that I had microwavable mac and cheese, and microwavable risotto (microwavable because I wanted it as soft and mushy as possible--not as good, but easier to eat)

                  Just remember--NO straws, sucking, cigarettes, booze, or anything that might make the "plugs" come out of your sockets--dry socket is supposed to be extremely painful. Also, carefully swish your mouth with warm salt water--it will make the healing process fly by! Other than that, rent some movies, pop some vicoden, and relax! If I could do it again, I would!!

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: schrutefarms

                    Also, forgot to mention that I also had laser whitening the day before-so everything had to be colorless, as well. And Billieboy, that is HORRIBLE!!!!

                  2. My darling wife fell out of a second story window and smashed every tooth in her head. She had to have the work done in the hospital. When she came to, there was her loving sisters who had brought her a thoughtful gift.....Peanut Brittle...

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: billieboy

                      THAT is funny! All sorts of family dynamics running through my head. Great material for a sit com!

                    2. I had 4 impacted wisdom teeth surgically removed about 15 years ago. I ate Dairy Queen freezes, malts and Percocet for about 4-5 days straight and still lost about 10 pounds. Be very aware about dry socket. Along with kidney stones and paper cuts, one of the more painful things you can experience.

                      1. Carnation Instant Breakfasts made with whole milk really helped my 20 year old son; mashed potatoes with beef broth slightly warmed up--no straws as marcabauman already pointed out. And, of course, listen to your oral surgeon's or dentist's instructions.

                        1. I actually had dry socket when I had my wisdom teeth removed, which was treated by stuffing a dressing with clove oil in it, so I constantly tasted the cloves, which made it quite difficult to want to eat.

                          When I was starving enough... I had milkshakes, mac n cheese (which I didn't chew... I just swallowed the individual pieces whole for the first 2 days, mashed chickpeas with vegenaise (a vegan mayo), and lots of soup.

                          None of the above taste good paired with clove, btw.
                          Do whatever you can to avoid dry socket, but be prepared, it can still happen.
                          Sucks if you are in Canada and the strongest meds they'll give you are T3's.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: wonderflosity

                            No vicodin?! This is going to be fun...

                            Thanks for the tip val, I'll definitely be picking up some of those instant breakfasts!

                          2. Always doing things the hard way, I had each of my wisdom teeth out separately. That was a long time ago now, but the food I remember most fondly is a big bowl of soft boiled eggs with butter and lightly toasted bread soaking in it. It was soooooooo good!

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: Caroline1

                              Good old fashioned tuna noddle casserole---the one with the cream of mushroom soup---goes down easily.

                              1. My mother made pasta fagiole and put it in the blender. I ate it three meals a day. It was great!

                                1. Please avoid rice, grains, or anything gritty (including grits and polenta)--while they're recommended by most orrthopedic surgeons, fishing out a piece of rice from the open wound is *extremely* painful.

                                  I'd even avoid grainy breads and dried herbs for those reasons too.

                                  If you don't have a handblender, now is the time to get one. It will make your life so much easier.

                                  Bananas, custard, yogurt (not raspberry), sherbet, smoothies, soup, popsicles (they'll help dull the pain when pressed on the wound).

                                  Martinis, unless you're on antibiotics.

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: Caralien

                                    Had mine out 14 years ago - all 4 at one time. First day ate nothing just painkillers and water. After that it was mashed potatoes, and LOT's (and I mean LOT"S) of frozen swanson fish and chips that my mom would cut up into itsy bitsy pieces - that was actually the only food I would eat for a week. I could barely open my mouth and the pain was so intense - that was my favorite food back then...and in my pathetic condition, I was allowed to eat ANYTHING for I think at least 1 or 2 weeks. Wow...that was a long time ago-

                                    Good luck!

                                    Edit - and I agree - absolutely no straws (you don't want any suction) or alcohol IMO - alcohol and painkillers/antibiotics are a seriously dangerous mix. You will probably be on both for some time so I would try to drink lots of water - not too much juice/sugary stuff as it will be hard to open your mouth enough to brush your teeth.

                                  2. DD had her wisdom teeth out Summer of 2006. Made a big pot of chicken stock, made her lots of different soups from it - noodles, cream of chicken, chicken vegetable (ground in blender), cream of mushroom (blender), etc. Also bought can of fortified milk powder from the health food store, you mix with milk & ice (fruit optional) to make very nutritious smoothies (avoid raspberries, strawberries). Made homemade sorbets with fruit, water and ice (avoid fruit with seeds). I also mashed up cottage cheese till very smooth (food processor/blender) in the blender, flavored with vanilla, almond, or other extracts.

                                      1. re: jjbourgeois

                                        I hope that some of the above comments about martinis, bourbon, Guiness, etc. are probably facetious, but I can only repeat again what I tell my patients over and over- don't have alcohol after third molar surgery- that and smoking are implicated in the process of clot dissolution that leads to "dry socket". There's plenty of literature to attest to it as well as the experiences of every dentist. Stick to milkshakes.

                                      2. scrambled eggs with spinach is a good way to get some more substantial food in you. I also really enjoyed canned pears, peaches, and mangoes.

                                        3 Replies
                                        1. re: fbf242

                                          thanks for the food suggestions!
                                          i need some help too on what to eat. I just had this weird operation (i have this lower right horizontal impacted tooth that is near the nerves.. the bone was cut several times but the tooth wont really come out) yesterday but to no avail have to repeat this operation on friday since i need to be operated a maxillofacial surgeon according to my dentist. I am in pain and with a swollen face.
                                          i can barely open my mouth and i can feel pain when i try to swallow.
                                          the dentist who did this procedure said this is normal. i wouldnt just want to hear that but more of interested on what is yummy and ok to eat.. =(

                                          i ended up crying every once in a while..mashed potato and mac & cheese don't really satisfy my needs .. help!

                                          1. re: tooth_fairy

                                            Last summer, my son survived on Gatorade and Italian ice for the first 48 hours after he had all 4 impacted wisdom teeth out. I'd been prepared to make all sorts of other soft foods (e.g, smoothies,, soups) but he felt rotten and had very little appetite. Found the cold of the Italian ice very soothing.

                                            Good news is that he had a very fast recuperation. By dinner on night 4 he was eating a burger (on plate using a fork), and mashed potatoes -- i.e., more or less normal food.

                                            1. re: masha

                                              Cabernet05 -- time has passed...how did you do?
                                              Everyone does experience these things differently. I remember taking my teenage son to get all 4 wisdom teeth extracted. On the drive home, he was rummaging through the glovebox in the car looking for pencil & paper. He couldn't talk with a mouthful of gauze so quickly wrote? "Vanilla shake???" He drank that and by dinner, had mashed potatoes with beef baby food heated and poured on top...lots of it. The next day he ate cautiously, but regular food. So, your experience may not be as bad as you are anticipating. Hope you didn't buy too much "soft" stuff!

                                        2. I had my wisdom teeth out today, and it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be at all. Usually I'm the biggest baby to pain, but I'm surprised at how well I'm taking it. All four were pulled, all impacted. I'm prescribed oxicodone for the pain, penicillin to ward off infection, and a drug called Dexamethasone to bring down the swelling. As a result, I'm only experiencing minor pain, and my face is hardly swollen. I've been sleeping most of the day, with ice on both sides of my cheeks.

                                          FOR FOOD: I make a smoothie with strawberries and other fruits. Unfortunately I cannot eat food with seeds like strawberries so I made a pear, orange, and apple smoothie that was surprisingly good. I put vitamins and protein powder in as well. I've also eaten McDonald's fruit and yogurt parfaits, just eating around the blueberries and strawberries. Chicken noodle soup, and chewing what I can in the front of my mouth has been another choice. Like me, some will find if you keep on eating, or making excessive movements with your mouth, like talking, you may bleed more, so try to take an easy.

                                          After the first two, maybe three days, you can start using a straw and eating harder foods. Wish you a speedy recovery.

                                          1. i just got mine removed and i have mostly been eating pudding. but i found that i could eat spaghetti by cutting it up in to short pieces. at first i had it with alfredo, but later there was regular marinara sauce and i had my dad put in a blender because there were buts of tomato and zucchini and such. (another thing you could do in addition is to over cook the noodles.) but that worked for actually eating a hardy meal.

                                            1. oh, also... i dont have a problem with not chewing my food haha. but if your one of those people who cant swallow without chewing... that might not work for you. but you could try it anyway with the noodles cut really short.

                                              1. My daughter had a palate expander a few years ago that (in the beginning) required that she eat soft things. I found an amazing selection of "baby" and toddler foods that were actually quite good! She expecially liked the freeze dried fruits (very small pieces, melt in your mouth) and pureed fruit desserts. Peanut butter (protein) came in squeezable tubes, also. Check the toddler/baby aisle of your local grocery and Whole Foods.

                                                2 Replies
                                                1. re: stuck in Hartford County

                                                  I remember when I was a kid and got my wisdom teeth removed. The dentist said I should drink through a straw for the rest of the day. A Mcdonalds strawberry shake never tasted so good.

                                                  1. re: jtothe

                                                    when i had mine removed i was SPECIFICALLY told NOT to drink out of a straw... the suction can dislodge the blood clots, and cause horrible bleeding and infection.

                                                2. I actually had a pretty okay wisdom teeth removal last year. I was very freaked out during the actual removal, but I was up and about pretty soon afterwards.

                                                  My grandmother actually figured out the easiest thing for me to eat afterwards. It turned out to be bean thread noodles stewed in chicken stock with some vegetables (I think it was a Chinese squash or melon). It turned out to be very soft and smooth, without anything that would stick in the wound. It was actually perfect.

                                                  1 Reply
                                                  1. re: sidwich

                                                    I have just had 2 impacted teeth removed from my lower jaw, one took 30 minutes and one took 2 hrs and has left me needing a bone graft at a later date. i should have had 4 removed but the dentist was so beat up after doing the 2 hr tooth he said to come back another time. i am on day 4 and have just eaten a lasagne which was good, and for lunch i had Buttered Chicken with rice and semolina. i just take a fork to it and make it into small pieces and make sure that what i eat has some kind of sauce so that i dont need to chew it to work up saliva. Breakfast is 2 mashed bananas a yoghurt and coffe. I have stopped the pain killers now and am just on anti inflam and anti biotics, Gel ice packs and plenty of water have helped i think and moving my jaw open and closed has stopped it from seizing up totally.