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Dietary advice for patients after Orthognathic surgery

Date issued: September 2021

Review date: September 2023

Ref: A-317 v2

PDF:  Diet after orthognathic surgery final September 2021 v2.pdf [pdf] 159KB

Dietary advice for patients after Orthognathic surgery

You are about to come into hospital for surgery to correct the position of your jaws.  This information will help you choose a sensible diet after your operation while your jaws heal.

If you have any concerns, or there is anything that you don’t understand, please talk to your orthodontist or surgeon.  We will be seeing you every week, immediately after your operation and we are always happy to answer any questions.

While you are in hospital

For the first week after your operation you should only eat very soft or pureed food that does not need any chewing.  It is unlikely that you will want to eat very much while you are in hospital.  But if you do, choose something from the hospital “Puréed Menu” or choose something like a yoghurt or soup.

The most important thing to do immediately after your operation is to drink plenty of fluids so that you do not become dehydrated.  We will only discharge you from hospital when we are sure that you are drinking enough.

The first week after the operation

When you first get home from hospital you should stick to a very soft or puréed diet that does not need any chewing.  An electric blender will be very useful at this time.

Examples of suitable meals for your first week after surgery are:

Soup                                                           Yogurt/mousse/fruit fool

Stew processed in a blender                      Stewed fruit/mashed banana   

Savoury mince                                           Rice pudding/trifle/jelly/ice cream

Mashed potato                                           Milk shakes/smoothies

Scrambled eggs                                         Porridge

If you cannot manage to eat enough to keep your strength up, you could replace some meals with liquid nutritional supplements (e.g. Ensure™, Complan™).

From week 2 until week 6 after the operation

At this stage of recovery it is likely that you will be able to eat slightly less “sloppy” foods.  You can now gradually add more foods to your diet.  But any foods you choose at this early stage of healing should be edible without much chewing.

Examples of suitable meals/foods are:

Pasta and sauce                                              Fruit crumble

Macaroni cheese                                             Soft cakes

Rice with chilli/curry                                        Steamed puddings

Stews with small pieces of meat/veg             Cheesecake

Soft fish or fish pie                                 

Soft meat cut into small pieces


Bread without crusts

Boiled/mashed potato

Vegetables in small pieces

From week 7 until week 12 after the operation

A lot of healing will now have occurred and you can progress to a more normal diet.  But you should still avoid hard, crunchy or chewy foods.  Don’t bite hard or eat foods like crusty bread or steak which require a lot of chewing.

From week 12 after the operation

Your bones should now be fully healed and you should be able to eat normally

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