While the degree of diet restriction you experience depends on the type of denture and the quality of the denture, there are some foods that best for denture wearers to eat and others that should be avoided all together.
Adjusting to life with dentures may take some time while your facial muscles adapt to new sensations and re-learning how to chew. Start slowly and choose soft foods that are easy to eat until your dentures are settled in and you feel comfortable eating solid foods again.
Here are some of the best foods denturists warn it’s best to avoid when wearing dentures and some great alternatives to ensure the longevity of both your dentures and your oral health:
Best Foods for Denture Wearers
- Ripe fruits, cooked veggies & smoothies
Many fruits become soft when ripe, which is why they are great for chewing with dentures. This includes bananas, raspberries, mangoes and tomatoes. You can also cook vegetables to get them soft for eating with dentures. Smoothies are a delicious source of nutrition and will allow the blender to do most of the work for your teeth while allowing you to reap all the health benefits.
- Protein rich spreads
Some spreads can be thick and chewy, like peanut or almond butter. Getting these sticky food ingredients stuck in your denture could prove to be a nightmare! When wearing partia or fulll dentures, stick to protein-rich, thinner spreads such as hummus, tuna or egg salad to give flavor to toast and sandwiches.
- Ground beef, pulled pork, or fish
Eating meat with dentures can prove to be a significant challenge. To make it easier, look for less chewy options and ways to cook ground beef and pulled pork until it becomes softer and easier to eat. Fish such as tuna and salmon are also a great alternative for full and partial denture wearers as it is soft and easy to break down. It may be necessary to cut your meat up into smaller pieces so that you are able to enjoy your meal without any challenges.
- Melt in your mouth chocolate
If you have a sweet tooth, soft or melt in your mouth chocolates are a fantastic option for denture wearers. Dark chocolate has numerous health benefits and doesn’t require any chewing. Not a chocolate fan? No worries -- try sucking on a fruity or caramel hard candy (just never bite down on it)!
Worst Foods for Dentures
- Crunchy fruits & vegetables
With full and partial dentures, you may find it difficult to successfully bite and chew hard fruits and vegetables. These include (but are not limited to) carrots, apples, pears, celery or corn on the cob.
- Steak or pork chops
Steak or pork chops can be extremely tough to chew and break down with full or partial dentures. In addition, the chewing techniques required to break the tough, fibrous proteins unfortunately don’t work that well for partial or full dentures.
- Peanut butter & other nut butters
Nut butters such as peanut or cashew butter can be very thick and difficult to chew. You may find that they cling to your dentures and even if they don’t pull them off, they can be extremely difficult to clean off.
- Bread with seeds
If you enjoy poppy seeds and other types of seeds in bread, rolls or bagels, this can be a big problem for denture wearers. Getting these seeds lodged in a denture might prove to be painful as well. Instead of seeded bagels and rolls, try whole grain bread and bagels with the grains smoothly baked in.
How to Eat With Your Full or Partial Dentures
Whether you are wearing full or partial dentures, it is important to discuss with your denturist the types of foods you can eat safely and how you should go about eating and drinking with your replacement teeth. Here are some helpful tips on eating with your dentures:
- In the beginning, refrain from using your front teeth for biting.
- Cut your food up into small pieces and try to chew on both sides of your mouth simultaneously
- To practice eating with your dentures, try easy-to-chew soft foods before moving on to tougher meats and hard vegetables
- In most cases, new denture wearers have difficulty eating salads because lettuce does not break down or tear well with replacement teeth.
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