What Is Dry Socket? How Do I Avoid It After A Tooth Extraction?

What Is Dry Socket? How Do I Avoid It After A Tooth Extraction?

Dry socket is a pretty common complication after tooth extraction, and it can be quite painful and delay the healing process significantly. But the good news is that it’s really easy to avoid dry socket if you follow the recovery instructions that Dr. Paul Gibas provides you after your treatment at Skylyn Dental Associates. Let’s explain the basics of dry socket, and go over some of our top tips for avoiding this dental complication after your tooth extraction in Spartanburg, SC.

What Is Dry Socket? How Do I Avoid It After A Tooth Extraction?

What Is Dry Socket? Explaining The Basics

When your tooth is extracted, a blood clot forms in the socket where the tooth used to be. As your mouth heals over time, this forms a sort of “scaffold” that new bone and gum tissue will grow over. That means this blood clot is an essential part of the healing process.

Dry socket happens when this blood clot is dislodged from your socket after your extraction, or completely fails to form. This exposes the underlying nerve endings and bone, and can cause serious pain and discomfort.

This is the most common complication after a tooth extraction. If you do have dry socket, you’ll need to come back to Skylyn Dental Associates. Dr. Gibas will examine the area and apply a special dressing to help relieve pain and encourage proper healing.

Our Top Tips For Avoiding Dry Socket After Your Tooth Extraction

The good news about dry socket is that it’s 100% avoidable. You just 

  • Avoid using straws or spitting forcefully for a few days – The action of sucking on a straw or spitting forcefully puts lots of pressure on your healing socket, and can dislodge your blood clot, causing dry socket. Do not use a straw or spit forcefully for at least three days after your treatment.
  • Rinse the socket instead of brushing it for 3-4 days – Rather than brushing the site directly, you can rinse with a salt water rinse or prescription mouth rinse for 3-4 days, as instructed by Dr. Gibas. But remember, don’t spit! Instead, let the rinse drip from your mouth without spitting once you’re done rinsing.
  • Don’t exercise heavily for a day or two – Heavy exercise or exertion within a day or two of your extraction should be avoided. Exercise increases blood flow and pressure, which could cause bleeding and interfere with healing. It’s likely to be unpleasant, too, so take things easy for a couple days after your extraction!
  • Don’t smoke or vape after your extraction – Similarly to using a straw, the sucking action of smoking or vaping may damage or dislodge your blood clot after your extraction. Ideally, you should avoid smoking or vaping for at least five days after your extraction.
  • Eat soft foods for at least a week after treatment – Eating really hard or crunchy foods is a no-go. They can poke and damage your blood clot, which is bad for healing and can cause a lot of pain, too. You’ll want to eat mostly liquid foods for a day or two, then soft foods like scrambled eggs and soup for up to a week after your surgery. After about a week, you can introduce firmer foods to your diet, but really crunchy and hard foods should be avoided for about two weeks.

Need A Tooth Extraction In Spartanburg, SC? Come To The Experts!

Whether you’ve got painful wisdom teeth or you have an unhealthy tooth that may need to be pulled in Spartanburg, SC, Dr. Gibas is here to help. At Skylyn Dental Associates, our Spartanburg dentists provide expert dental care in a comfortable, judgment-free environment. Give us a call at (864) 573-9255 or contact us online. We’re always accepting new patients, and Dr. Gibas would love to meet with you and provide you with the expert dental care you need in Spartanburg.