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What To Eat After a Tooth Extraction

Cartoon of a man recovering from oral surgery with bubbles full of instructions.
Image by Authority Dental under CC 2.0

Are you scheduled for an upcoming tooth extraction? We understand that extractions can seem intimidating and overwhelming. However, you have nothing to fear! It’s important to have all the information you need to have a smooth and speedy recovery. Here’s what you need to know about tooth extraction aftercare and dietary concerns.

Reduce Swelling with a Cold Compress & Anti-Inflammatory Medications

After a tooth extraction, you may experience cheek and gum swelling. We recommend holding a cold compress for 15 minutes on the outside of your cheek closest to the extraction site. If approved, you can also take over-the-counter medications as directed to further help minimize any swelling or discomfort post extraction.

Follow a Soft Food Diet & Avoid Straws

One of the best ways to ensure you have a stress-free recovery period is to follow the dietary restrictions closely. We recommend sticking to a soft food diet. You can have soup, mashed potatoes, scrambled eggs, yogurt, ice cream, and any other soft foods. If you eat any tough or crunchy foods, you run the risk of dislodging the blood clot protecting the extraction site. We also recommend avoiding straws for at least three weeks. Straws create a suction within the mouth that can also cause the clot to move and lead to dry socket.


Too much activity directly following a tooth extraction can also dislodge the clot. But that’s not the only reason you should take it easy for a few days. A tooth extraction is oral surgery and your body needs some time to recover. Watch a movie, take a nap, or read a book you’ve had waiting in the wings. A little relaxation will make your recovery more enjoyable.

Report Any Issues As Soon As Possible

During your healing process, make sure you report any dental issues that develop as soon as possible. If you don’t alert your dentist about any issues you’re having with the extraction site, it can lead to more serious problems, such as infection or dry socket.

Questions? Ask Corvallis Dental Group!

Do you have questions about tooth extractions? We can answer them! Our Corvallis Dental Group team has extensive experience performing high-quality dental extractions in Corvallis, OR. Please contact us to learn more!

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