Are you having a tooth extracted by your dentist? If so, you've likely heard about the risk of getting a dry socket. This is a condition caused by problems with your blood clot, and it can happen any time you have an empty socket in your gums. Here are a few things that you need to know about dry sockets.
What Is A Dry Socket?
A dry socket happens when the hole left in your gums from an extraction does not heal correctly. Normally you will have a blood clot form within the socket, which is what protects the soft tissue and bone that is exposed. The gums will eventually heal over the blood clot and it's like the tooth was never there. However, it's possible for the blood clot to fall out or not form at all. This is what causes dry socket.
What Are The Signs Of A Dry Socket?
The signs you'll most likely notice when you have a dry socket are pain and discomfort. However, you'll also have an empty socket where you may be able to see the bone. It will also produce a bad odor that is not very pleasant. You can even experience a foul taste in your mouth that doesn't go away from brushing your teeth.
When Does The Expected Discomfort From An Extraction Go Away?
You should not mistake the normal pain and discomfort from a tooth extraction as a dry socket. In general, that discomfort will go away after a couple of days. However, pain and discomfort should only improve and not get worse. If your condition gets worse this is a key sign that you have a dry socket.
How Does A Dry Socket Form?
The main reason that you'll have a dry socket is because the blood clot comes out of your socket. This can be due to you not following the care routine set out by your dentist. This includes not sucking through strays, not smoking, and even rinsing your mouth out too aggressively. However, it's also possible that the blood clot never forms in the socket and it is nothing specifically that you did.
How Does A Dentist Help With A Dry Socket?
If you have a dry socket, your dentist is going to assist by packing the socket with a medicated dressing. This helps cover the socket and provide pain relief while your body does the rest to help heal the socket. You may also be prescribed an anti-inflammatory medication or an antibiotic to help with healing.
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