Adjusting to eating?

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  • Updated 11 months ago
I just began week 3 after full extractions (28) and immediates. After 2 weeks of shakes, smoothies and soups, the denturist finally fixed my bite and I was so excited to go home and "eat!", but nothing I did seemed to work. I started with a very small piece of a soft roll, and it just seemed to get lost in my mouth, I couldn't even find it to try to swallow it. Then I tried some macaroni, it took forever to chew one piece and I felt like the same thing happened; very small pieces would move to the roof of my mouth and I felt like I had to just swallow them whole. Next I tried scrambled eggs and just ended up in tears. What is the trick to learning to chew again?! How long does this process take?  I'm doing everything I've read: tiny bites, up and down motion, etc. I know it hasn't even been a full day since I became capable of even biting down, but I'm so depressed and terrified I am going to just be one of those people who still can't eat 6 months from now!  Meanwhile I am averaging losing about a half a pound a day. Any  help or even just optimistic words would be greatly appreciated!
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Debra Abrams

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Posted 3 years ago

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Amanda

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Debra this Friday will be my 3 weeks and while i can't help with eating i can tell you I am in the same boat I lose the food in my mouth as well I had to take them out and just eat swallow soft stuff. So i feel ya its got you get better..
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TJ

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Right there with you guys.  Just started week 2 and still doing the soft food thing, no chewing ability whatsoever.  I'm taking very small forkfulls of eggs, overcooked pasta, etc and swallowing them whole.  I try to bite, chew or grind at the beginning of every meal and i usually ended up frustrated in a matter of minutes.
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Ted

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Just keep on trying.  I looked through some of my old posts and this was my first post in another forum:

Today marks 14 days since I had my remaining 24 teeth extracted.  23 of the 24 teeth broke or cracked while being removed, so a 2 hour procedure ended up taking twice that long.  Even with this complication, things have been going pretty well.  Sutures are dissolving, gums are still sore, but healing, and most of the swelling and discoloration in my jaw is gone.

Chewing is challenging, but honestly, I didn't expect to be doing ANY chewing at this point.  Speaking is not an issue and the dentures seem to fit well without using any adhesives except when attempting to chew some harder foods.  I am scheduled for a reline in another week at +21 days and am looking forward to seeing if that helps.  To date I've only needed one adjustment at about day 5 to fix a few pressure points.

My biggest complaint seems to be some ulcers on the bottom/side of my tongue and it seems like my tongue gets thicker as the day goes on.  By the end of the day, I am happy to give my gums a break and remove my dentures.  Salt Water and Orajel Antiseptic Rinse help somewhat.  Watching my diet to avoid OJ, Tomato foods, etc.  It almost seems as if the PH in my mouth has somehow become more acidic.  Is this a unique issue?  I haven't seen any other similar issues discussed online.  

Here's the response I got to my post (He was correct!  I ate my first burger and fries at T +29 days)

14 days is still rough; about a month after full-mouth extractions I was comfortably eating hamburgers and fries.  I didn't notice any PH issues, but I assume that will go away.  You get used to it all after a few months.  These days my diet and speech are completely normal with full upper and lower plates, and no adhesive. 

AND...

I noticed a nice turning point at about the 21 day mark when things really started feeling more "normal." 

Be patient and continue to do the warm salt water rinses. Keep up with those 5-6 times a day, particularly after eating or drinking anything other than water. They really do help sooth the mouth and toughen the gums.

It takes some time, but you will get the hang of the chewing thing!

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Debra Abrams

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Thank you so much, Ted, you have given me hope!  Chewing is very uncomfortable, but it's so new to me that I am just determined to not give up. I'm hoping if I just try to chew a few times a day, it will start becoming second nature to me.  I'll keep you posted. I have my calendar marked for day 29!
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Spanky

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never give up Debra, I am 5 months with my perms and I am still trying.
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Amanda

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Thanks Ted!! So they got what broke off that day? My dentist didn't they are still in there saying they will come to the top and my biggest complaint is that I've butt dine nerve pain under my gums especially with my teeth in and drinking. I guess its nerve pain from a toy 2 tip but it hurts
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Amanda

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I've got some nerve . Sorry
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Amanda

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Dang Ted the last line I meant. I guess its pain from a root tip
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Ted

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Yes, they took all pieces out.  I've never heard of them leaving anything in there, but I'm not going to second guess your Dentist/Oral Surgeon.  

They also did the alveoloplasty (gum contouring) that day and leveraged off my lower jaw for a few of the extractions so I was pretty black and blue and swollen.   She said I was one of her toughest cases and that I had really long roots.  Glad I did NOT know all that going in!!!  Still it was not that bad even with just lidocaine/Novocain. 
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Amanda

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Wow Ted, no its ok about my dentist I guess I get it, she was probably tired of me I knew and heard everything that was going on so I was ready to be done but now I just know I have to have these removed or wait for it to work their way out? Well I'm happy you got that much attention lol and feeling better
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Christi S

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I'm really frustrated & it's only day 5! I feel like I'm never going to be able to eat again.....
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Ted

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Five days is FAR TOO SOON to evaluate your future eating ability.  Honestly, it can take a few weeks to even get the hang of basic chewing.  Read my post above from where I was out almost two years ago at two weeks.  Give it some time.  I can now eat pretty much anything.
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Melanie Baker

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Yea 5 days is way too early to really worry about eating anything other ham soft things. U have to go slow take ur time and not try to hurry it. It takes a while to heal and then just getting used to eating with dentures takes time. B patient u will get there. I know it sucks but I'm a little more than 2 months out and I'm eating almost everything. Just gotta eat slower and smaller bites.
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Christi S

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I've resorted to just soups for now. I'm scouring the internet for different, filling soup recipes. I had NO appetite until today, now I'm ridiculously hungry. Patience has never been one of my strong points, but I will obviously have to get over that!
I had a bilateral sinus lift and bone graft in October. I healed very quickly and with minimal discomfort from that. I guess I'm slightly surprised by how much slower this part of the process is going.
I'm having "all on 4" done, so my titanium posts are in, but my entire bite surface is stitches right now.
I'm wearing my temp, but unable to use any adhesive on the bite surface. I think that might be what's bothering me more than anything. I can feel the temp "rocking" if I attempt to chew even the smallest​ bite of food.

Thank you all for your comments. I am finding this site extremely helpful!
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Melanie Baker

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Christi my husband browned ground beef then chopped really fine then mixed in mashed potatoes my first few days. That was so fine I could pretty much just swallow. It was very filling and was HEAVEN to actually have real food. Lol
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TJ

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I'm living on smothered burritos right now. Brown some ground beef, simmer it in a little enchilada sauce (MILD mixed with tomato sauce) for a while. Make the burrito, put it in a dish and cover it with sauce and cheese, then bake it for a bit. It's just barely held together by the burrito shell, so when you hit it with a fork it turns to mush. Easy to moosh, no chewing needed and it tastes great.

Had to come up with something other than soup and frosties - I've lost 10 pounds in the last 10 days. I'm down from 205 to 178 in the last year and I'm starting to look like hell.
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Zaida

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Im struggling with diet as i cannot yet put my dentures in.  Im 4 weeks after surgery.  However, I supplement my diet with Ensure.  I also found that I can eat chef boy ardee's mini-ravioli and lasagna without having to chew it all.   I can also eat homemade spaghetti as long as it is finely cut.    

I can also eat meatballs subs from subway with no teeth at all.  The trick is to get extra sauce and use a knife and fork.  cut it into peices that are smaller then bites..  way smaller.  It takes longer to eat it..  but at least you get filled up.

Another edible is CANNED corned beef hash.    Heat this up in a skillet for about 15 minutes over semi high heat.   Do not add oils or butter.  Then, fry 2 eggs over easy.  On your plate, put the corned beef hash, then lay the eggs over the top.  NOW break the egg yolks over the hash and mix it up.   The yolks help keep the has together so when you swallow it stays together.  This is so soft you really dont even have to mush it against the roof of your mouth at all.
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Marcia Johnson

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Look back on my first posts.  I literally was in SUCH a depression.  The emotional toll not being able to eat. and losing part of your face does to you is unreal.  But I promise there is hope!  I'm a little over a month in and can eat most things.  Your gums are going to be sore, and not used to having the weight of chewing on them.  After all, it was your teeth and JAW BONES that took that brunt before, not your gums.  Also the gums are healing, so it the bone... it's a big mess of soreness.  Just take it a day at a time.  And keep trying.  Pretty soon your gums will start to toughen, you'll learn how the denture feels while eating and how to use them, and you will get better.  Rome wasn't built in a day. As eating got better, my mood quickly got better, too.  +
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Debra Abrams

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Thank you! Since I posted this, things have gotten better. I still cant imagine ever eating normally, but im trying to have faith. Your reply meant a lot. Thanks again!
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Sharon C Hazelet-Torfs

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I'm 2 years and still having issues eating
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Patricia Meyer

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Ive had no teeth for 5 months from bone spurs and multiple surgeries in my mouth. Ive lost about 30 pounds and have been on the verge of a break down. I just had another bone removed this tuesday and the last stitch came out sometime earlier. Hopefully after an adjustment on monday I can start to wear my new dentures and be on my way to eating some real food Im starving. Good luck keep us posted on your journey.