You have just been fitted with your new dentures, so you need to know what to eat. The best thing to do is to follow your dentist’s advice. If you are afraid of eating too much, then pick foods that are low in calories. If it is just that you are not sure what to eat, then you may take your time to work it out.
What to eat with new dentures can be a more difficult question to answer than with old dentures. Here are a few suggestions.
What to Eat After Getting Dentures
For many denture-wearers, the biggest adjustment comes with what and how you eat. The spaces surrounding dentures are prime places for food to get stuck.
Dentures can also slip out of place uncomfortably when you bite into hard foods.
In light of these issues, choose a diet that will please your palate without displacing your dentures. See our suggestions below for plenty of great ideas about what to eat when you have dentures.
Eating With New Dentures
When you first get dentures, your gums need to adjust to chewing and biting. Your gums may also still be sore from any dental work you had to remove natural teeth.
To make your first few meals with dentures comfortable, eat soft foods like:
- Hot cereals
- Gelatin dessert
- Mashed potatoes or other mashed vegetables
Watch out for hot liquids. Dentures insulate your mouth, making it less sensitive to heat. After a few times eating hot foods, you’ll adjust to your new level of heat sensitivity.
Transitioning to Solid Foods Again
After a few days, your mouth will adjust to the dentures, and you can move onto more solid foods. Be sure to cut them into small pieces so they don’t require excessive chewing.
Start by incorporating foods like the following:
- Cooked rice
- Soft bread
- Soup with cooked vegetables and soft meats
- Cooked greens
- Soft, skin-free fish
- Baked beans
Food to Enjoy with Dentures
If you find yourself missing any of the foods listed above, take heart! There are plenty of tasty substitutions available. Include these tasty options in your denture-friendly diet:
- Slow-cooked meats. In many cases, the longer you cook meat, the more tender it becomes. Many slow-cooking methods also add intense and deep flavors to meat. Try beef brisket, pulled pork, or pot roast.
- Ground meats. Ground meats are easy to eat with dentures because grinding them removes much of their toughness. Ground meats work in many recipes too-from casseroles to tacos to meat pies. If you don’t like the fat content of ground beef, choose lighter ground turkey.
- Non–nut protein spreads. If you love peanut butter for its mixture of sweet and salty or its high protein concentration, replace it with hummus. Made from chickpeas, this dip and spread has a mild flavor that pairs well with many spices. For a sweeter nut butter replacement, try cream cheese.
- Chocolate. Candy-lovers with dentures can still satisfy their sweet tooth with chocolate. As long as you avoid candy bars loaded with nuts, toffee, or other potential denture hazards, you’re good to go. Treat yourself to an indulgent European chocolate bar or a few handmade chocolates.
- Ripe fruits. Many fruits are naturally soft when they’re ripe and ready to eat. Whether you prefer oranges, tomatoes, peaches, bananas, or mangos, you can enjoy most fruits with dentures. For a real treat, blend fruits up in some ice cream or frozen yogurt and create a smoothie.
- Cooked vegetables. Vegetables tend to be crunchy in their raw state, but boiling, steaming, or microwaving veggies gives them a softer texture. The wide variety of vegetables means you never have to be bored with this healthy food group.
Foods to Avoid with Dentures
Eventually, you’ll be able to eat most of the foods you’re accustomed to enjoying. Just make sure to chew thoroughly, using both sides of your mouth as evenly as possible.
Even so, there are still some foods you should avoid or eat sparingly. These foods fit into these categories:
- Sticky foods. Sticky substances can move your dentures out of place, allowing food to get underneath the dentures and irritate your gums. Examples include peanut butter and gummy candies.
- Foods with small but stubborn pieces. Any food with pieces your natural teeth cannot grind or chew easily present problems for dentures. Popcorn kernels, sesame seeds on rolls, and shelled nuts or seeds can get stuck in and around dentures.
- Hard foods. Hard foods require your jaw and your dentures to apply uneven pressure. This can damage or dislodge dentures. Stay away from nuts, popcorn, apples, carrot sticks, and corn on the cob, except as an occasional treat.
- Tough meats. Foods that require many bites to tenderize them place unnecessary stress on dentures and gums. Too much chewing and grinding creates sore spots where dentures and gums meet. Avoid pork chops, steak, and ribs to prevent sores from developing.
As you can see, having dentures doesn’t signal the end of your culinary adventures. Quite the contrary–having dentures may lead you to try foods you haven’t eaten in a while or to come up with new ways to prepare your favorite meals. Treat your dentures right and you’ll be eating well for many years to come.
Eating Suggestions for People Who Have New Dentures
Mechanical Soft Diet
The first rule of thumb when wearing new dentures is to take it easy with food. Start slowly with soft foods that are don’t require excessive chewing.
Eating red meat, crackers, raw carrots, and or anything crunchy will exert undue stress on underlying gum tissues, increase the risk of irritation and inflammation.
Until your gums better adapt to the denture plate, take it easy and follow these simple self-help tips:
- Start with a mechanical soft diet.Pureed foods like applesauce, puddings, cooked cereals, scrambled eggs, and mashed potatoes provide the nutrition you need without compromising your gums or stressing your jaw muscles.
- Check the temperature.Be careful with hot foods that can burn your mouth. You won’t be able to judge temperatures as well due to the insulating effect of the dentures. Test hot foods on your lips before putting them in your mouth.
- Don’t hold liquids in your mouth. This can loosen bottom dentures.
- Avoid spicy foods.If you do have sores or irritation, they can cause burning or stinging.
You may find that certain foods taste different with dentures, particularly salty and bitter foods.1 Try not to worry; your sense of taste should improve over time.
Eating Solid Foods
When you’re ready to move on to solid foods, be sure to cut your food into tiny pieces. You should also be cognizant of how you chew and how fast you eat.
It is generally best to eat sitting down and to allow yourself plenty of time for a meal. Eating on the run will more likely cause pain and denture slippage as you rush through a meal.
Among the other useful tips:
- Chew on both sides. Distribute your food evenly on both sides in the back of your mouth when you chew, this will help keep your dentures more stable while you eat.
- Chew slowly and thoroughly before you swallow. Don’t gulp down large pieces of unchewed food because you could choke on them.
- Take smaller bites.Slice fresh fruits and vegetables into very thin slices or chop them into tiny pieces, so they are easy to chew or cook them before serving.
- Drink with your meals.Whole grain bread and cereals are good for you, but they may stick to your teeth. Eat them with liquids to make them easier to chew and swallow.
- Avoid hard-to-chew meats.Replace tough red meats with poultry, fish, eggs, and legumes, or choose stewed or slow-cooked meats.
- Avoid sticky or gummy foods. These include taffy, caramel, marshmallows treats, peanut butter, and raisins. These can adhere to the upper and lower molars (chewing teeth) and dislodge your dentures.
The choice of denture adhesive is also important. Adhesives in glue form tend to provide the greatest stability but can make cleaning difficult.
Adhesive seals and powders offer less stability but easier clean-up, reducing the risk of gum irritation.2
Whatever you do, take things slowly and remember that a little soreness is to be expected as the muscles in your mouth and cheeks get used to keeping your dentures in place.
But be sure to tell your dentist if pain and other problems do not go away.
Eating After Healing
Once you are fully adjusted to wearing dentures, you should be able to eat almost anything. However, there may be some foods that will always be difficult to eat such as foods that are hard, sticky or contain small hard particles.
Even with a strong mouth and well-fitting dentures, there are some foods you will want to eat with care:
- Chewing gum
- Corn on the cob
- Crunchy fruits
- Crunchy peanut butter
- Crusty bread
- Raw vegetables
- Sticky candy
- Tough, stringy meats
- Whole nuts
Meal Suggestions for New Denture Wearers
Do you need some culinary inspiration for your early denture days? Here you can find some foods to help you adjust to eating with dentures.
Days 1 to 14
Your gums may be sensitive for the first few days, so it’s a good idea not to strain them too much. Going for liquids and soft foods will give them the time they need to adapt to your new dentures.
Choose food that doesn’t need chewing like:
- Mashed potatoes or other vegetables
- Vegetable soup
- Soft cheeses
Days 15 to 29
Once your mouth starts to get used to your dentures, you can reintroduce solid foods. However, don’t get the steak out just yet, start slowly with easy-to-chew, bite-sized pieces. Try easy-to-eat dishes like:
- Well-cooked pasta
- Baked potatoes
- Meat cut into small pieces.
Day 30 and Beyond
Congratulations, you’ve made it through your first month with dentures! The good news is with some help from Fixodent you can now go out and eat all your favorite foods.
Have a crunchy salad with nuts and seeds, corn on the cob, chicken, or even a crisp apple to keep the doctor away.
Don’t worry about eating with your new dentures. Just take it slowly, and soon you will be eating your favorite foods again with no problem.
If you have any doubts about living with and caring for your dentures, please consult your dental professional.
However, if you notice your dentures feel loose when eating or your dentures don’t fit properly, even with adhesive, see your dentist to get your dentures adjusted and take care with the food you eat.
In the meantime, eat smaller bites and maybe opt for softer food to avoid any choking risks.
Make sure to take care of your dentures and they will take care of you. It’s important to remove food from dentures, to avoid tartar formation and to keep your dentures free from stains.
Fixodent is here to help you in each step of your life with dentures.
7 Easy Tips for Eating with New Dentures
After a few weeks and multiple appointments with your dentist, you’re now the proud owner of brand new dentures in Parma Heights!
Your smile and even your overall face look so much better now that you have all of your teeth back, but while they might look great, using them is an entirely different matter.
Learning to eat with dentures can sometimes take a week or more to feel completely natural, but with these simple tips we’re going to share today, you’ll be enjoying your favorites again in no time.
1. Start Slowly
For just the first few days, it’s a good idea to stick to a liquid diet that includes items like apple sauce, pudding, oatmeal, soup, and so on.
Immediately trying to chew could be very uncomfortable and potentially harm your sensitive gums, so give them a few days to get used to the dentures before progressing to solid food.
2. Chew Evenly
Most people tend to chew on one side of their mouth more than the other, but for denture wearers, this could make the prosthetic more likely to slip out of place.
Once you start eating solid foods again, chew slowly, and make sure to use both sides of your mouth equally. This will help keep the dentures more stable, and eventually, you’ll do this without even thinking about it.
3. Be Careful of Hot Liquids
We all love our coffee and hot chocolate, but be extra careful with them right after you have gotten your dentures. They have an insulating quality that can make you not realize something is too hot until it’s too late. Give a hot drink a tiny sip at first to make sure it’s safe.
4. Cut Your Food Into Smaller Pieces
While you’re still learning to chew, cutting your food into smaller pieces will make your job that much easier and won’t put as much pressure on your gums while they are still trying to adjust.
5. Be Mindful of Tough Foods
Something like red meat can be extremely difficult to chew with dentures, so whenever you have it, it’s a good idea to make sure it has either been stewed or slowly cooked over a number of hours.
Other good sources of protein that are easier to chew include items like chicken, fish, eggs, and legumes.
6. Be Careful with Sticky Foods
Sticky foods like candies, peanut butter, gum, and certain berries can easily become trapped between your dentures and your gums, making you more likely to develop irritation and an infection.
Feel free to enjoy them, but make sure to clean your dentures and mouth thoroughly afterward.
7. A Little Soreness is Okay
Even if you take things nice and easy, you’re still asking a lot of your body when getting used to your new dentures, so expect your jaw and/or gums to feel a bit sore during the process.
If you get a particular sore spot on your gums or the pain becomes persistent or severe, be sure to contact your dentist right away so they can adjust your dentures.
With these tips, as well as a little patience, you’ll likely be eating normally within a few weeks. Learning to chew with dentures is no simple task, but it certainly beats the alternative of going through life with multiple missing teeth, right?
Before you know it, you’ll be enjoying dinner with your family and friends and the absolute last thing on your mind will be your dentures.