Before you learn how to avoid dry socket after an extraction, it is important to understand what a dry socket is and what can cause it.
So, What Is a Dry Socket?
Our bodies are amazing! After a tooth is extracted, it will produce a blood clot at the extraction site.
Its main role is to protect the nerves and bone that have become exposed after the tooth has been removed. This blood clot should stay there until the extraction site is completely healed.
Unfortunately, the blood clot can be dislodged from its place, creating a painful condition known as “dry socket.”
A dry socket can create increased discomfort and can slow down the healing process. That’s why it’s important to talk to your dentist immediately after you notice it.
Dry Socket Causes
In some situations, no blood clot is formed at the site of tooth extraction. Other times, a clot will form, but becomes dislodged for one reason or another.
But what causes blood clots to stop forming?
Although specialists differ on what the exact reason is, some possible disruptions to blood clot formation include:
- Excessive contamination with bacteria at the site of extraction
- The food consumed by the patient
- The fluids ingested by the patient
- Trauma experienced at the site of extraction, either during a complicated tooth extraction, or during aftercare.
Tips for Preventing Dry Socket
- Mind Your Diet
On the first day after surgery, it is essential to eat soft foods such as yogurt, mashed potatoes, and so on.
On the second day after the operation, you can try to eat harder foods, but don’t hesitate to return to the soft ones if you feel any pain or discomfort.
- Avoid Using Straws
Due to the suction action when using a straw the blood clot may be dislodged from its place, leading to a dry socket.
Dentists recommend avoiding the use of straw for at least one week after the extraction procedure.
- Take Care of Your Oral Hygiene
The most effective way to avoid a dry socket is to maintain proper oral hygiene and keep your mouth and teeth clean. Keep up with brushing and flossing, but be gentle around the extraction site, and avoid brushing it directly for the first few days.
With the help of oral hygiene, you can prevent the development of harmful bacteria that can lead to the degradation of the blood clot.
- Medications Can Interfere with the Formation of the Blood Clot
Some drugs, such as aspirin and other blood thinners, can stop the development of blood clots.
That’s why it’s important to seek your doctor’s advice on what medications you can take and let them know before the extraction if you are taking any prescriptions.
A dry socket is a dental complication that can occur in any patient and can slow down the healing process after an extracted tooth. At Eastside Family Dentistry, we not only take excellent care of your teeth, but also make sure to educate you about how to take care of them at home too.
Keep these tips in mind and get in touch with us if you think something is wrong.