Wondering what you can eat with dental implants? When you need to replace missing teeth, your diet is an important aspect to keep in mind. After all, your mouth is the first link in nutrient absorption and a balanced diet. Without healthy teeth to chew with, it’s harder for your body to break down the foods you’re consuming.
Anyone who has lost teeth knows that it leads to changes in the way that they eat. Whether you’re having to chew on one side of your mouth or cut your food into smaller pieces, it’s both tedious and time-consuming. Restoring your smile can help you enjoy your favorite foods and prevent irregular, premature wear on your remaining teeth.
The better a prosthetic or fixed dental restoration works to break down your food, the easier it will be to go about your normal activities. But is it possible to eat with dental implants the same as you did with your natural teeth?
Eating with Dental Implants
Eating with implants isn’t much different than the way you ate when you still had all of your natural teeth. That’s exactly what they were designed for; to mimic anatomical teeth. Depending on the type of implant restoration you have, you might notice that chewing or biting feels a little different than it used to, but for the most part, the experience will be nearly identical.
Biting Strength and Integrity of an Implant
Dental implants are stronger than natural teeth. Their integrity and ability to withstand all of the normal biting and chewing pressures from your jaws make them easy to transition into. Whether you’re planning to enjoy a thick juicy steak, bite straight into a fresh, crispy apple, or something else with a firm texture, you’re completely in the clear.
Do you need to “go easy” on your food choices when you eat with dental implants? No. Just eat anything that you normally would. Your family gatherings, holiday treats, backyard barbecues, and everyday meals no longer mean having to be wary or self-conscious about what you’re eating. Your dental implants give you the freedom to enjoy food all over again.
Are Implants Easier to Eat with Than Dentures?
Absolutely. With dentures, you have a “plate” or layer of acrylic that’s covering the roof of your mouth (palate). This additional structure can alter the way your food tastes. Unfortunately, that’s not the only concern. A traditional denture also reduces the extent of your biting forces by around 75% or more. That means less power to chew and grind up your food. Firmer foods become more challenging to eat, triggering a shift to processed and softer types of meals.
Fortunately, that’s not the case with dental implants. It’s much easier to eat with dental implants than it is with dentures. The implant itself provides the underlying stability you need to bite into firmer or tougher types of textures, giving you a wider variety of foods to choose from. Let’s not forget that traditional implant restorations also free up your palate, making it easier to move your tongue and the ability to absorb all of the savory flavors and textures of your favorite foods.
Types of Food You Can Eat with Dental Implants
What are some of the foods you can eat with dental implants that you might not be able to eat if you had missing teeth or wear a traditional denture? Here are just a few examples:
• Corn on the cob
Anything that’s typically crunchy, stickier, or firmer in texture is possible to enjoy if you have dental implants. There really isn’t anything (when it comes to normal food, that is) that’s off-limits.
What Not to Eat with Dental Implants
Likewise, don’t use your dental implants to chew on things like your pen, nails, or to open packages. Old habits can be hard to break. Even though it’s safe to eat with dental implants, you don’t want to put excessive, unnatural force on your bite outside of normal mealtimes. Excessive tension such as clenching, grinding, or chewing your nails could lead to permanent damage to your implant restoration.
How Soon After Placement Can You Eat with Dental Implants?
Osseointegration is one of those crucial steps that cannot be rushed. It may take up to 3-6 months after the implant is actually installed.
But will you have to go that long without “teeth” or being able to eat normally? No. Our DFW dental implant experts can fit you with an interim prosthesis that protects your integrating dental implants while allowing you to eat (and smile.)
Side Note: Stabilized Dentures
Some of our DFW dental implant patients have a stabilized overdenture, which is like a traditional denture that snaps onto a set of implants. This merger of two approaches to care offers added stability, but may still require slightly smaller or tender bites of food to ensure mealtimes are a positive experience.
Ask the Archpoint Implant Dentistry Team
Our Dallas and Fort Worth dental implant specialists can help you achieve a healthier bite that enhances both your personality and your diet! Worrying about what you can eat with dental implants? Practically all of your favorite foods.
Call the Archpoint Implant Dentistry team today to reserve a consultation. Flexible financing plans are available.