What is a dry socket?

What is a Dry socket? (alveolar osteitis) This is the most common post-extraction complication and perhaps the most painful. Incidence varies from 1.7-3% for routine extractions and 15-37% for surgical and impaction extractions, many times involving lower molars.

A dry socket results due to failure of a blood clot after tooth removal, effectively, leaving bone exposed and filled with food debris.

Signs/ Symptoms include:

  • unrelenting, increasing pain after tooth removal, especially within the first three days
  • pain not relieved with mild pain killers such as Nurofen and Panadol
  • empty socket
  • foul odour
  • foul taste
  • pain radiating to ear

Factors causing dry socket:

  • smoking
  • decreased blood supply
  • vigorous rinsing after extraction
  • surgical extractions
  • bacterial overload
  • food impaction
  • oral contraceptives

If you are experiencing a dry socket contact Healthy Smile Centre 9662 0999 immediately to get the socket dressed with medication.