All-On-4 can deliver a full, confident smile with fewer implants compared to traditional implant treatment. But what does recovery from All-on-4 surgery look like? You’ll need to make a few changes to your diet, and you can expect some slight discomfort. Here’s everything you need to know to prepare your refrigerator before you go into surgery.
Stage 1: 1-2 Weeks Post-Surgery
During the first few days up to about two weeks after surgery, you may experience soreness and swelling around your mouth, jaw, and throat. This mild discomfort is completely normal and will gradually subside. During this initial recovery period, however, you should stick to a liquid diet. You can begin drinking liquids immediately after surgery. Try to drink only cool liquids within the first 48 hours, and avoid hot or spicy liquids for the first three or four days post-surgery.
While it may seem more convenient to sip smoothies and other drinks through a straw, you should actually avoid using straws at all costs. The suction from a straw can loosen blood clots that form near the surgery site and delay healing.
It’s important to drink fluids that are packed with nutrition in order to prevent infection and speed up your recovery. Here are just some of the many foods and drinks you can consume:
- Water and milk
- Tea and coffee
- Fruit juices
- Broth (bouillon — beef, chicken, vegetable)
- Soups, especially cream-based soups
- Meal replacement shakes (e.g., Ensure, Boost, Special K)
- Yogurt drinks
- Protein shakes
- Gelatin (e.g., Jell-O) and pudding
- Ice cream and frozen yogurt
Stage 2: 2 Weeks to 3 Months Post-Surgery
Soft Food Diet
After about two weeks, any soreness should disappear and you can switch from a liquid diet to eating soft foods. Over the next few months, your implants will fuse directly with your jawbone through “osseointegration”. Eating soft foods helps ensure the success of this important process. Avoid munching on hard, chewy, or crunchy foods during this period.
Fruits and Vegetables You Can Eat
All fruits and vegetables that require minimal chewing are fair game! This includes:
- Mashed foods like applesauce, avocado, and cauliflower
- Soft fruits like bananas and watermelon
- Anything canned and without skin or seeds
- Anything baked or cooked to a soft consistency
Breads, Pasta, and Grains You Can Eat
For breakfast, you can enjoy cream of wheat, oatmeal, or pancakes. For lunch and dinner, it is safe to eat soft breads, cooked pasta, quinoa, and mashed potatoes.
Protein You Can Eat
Protein helps rebuild and repair tissues affected by oral surgery and helps the body fight infection. During this stage of recovery, you can eat:
- Pureed stews
- Sloppy Joe
Plan Ahead for Your Recovery
Be proactive to ensure a smooth road to recovery! Before undergoing All-on-4 surgery, spend some time researching recipes that include the items mentioned above. Be sure to stock up on the right food items and ingredients beforehand, so you can rest and relax after your implants are placed.
About the Author
Dr. Dina Cocco has helped Ann Arbor residents rebuild their smiles with dental implants for over 30 years. The proud University of Michigan graduate knows every smile is unique, which is why she creates personalized treatment plans for each and every patient. To learn more about All-on-4 recovery, read Dr. Cocco’s blog or call 734-668-8636.