Understanding The Dental Condition Known As Dry Socket

Dentist Blog

Nobody looks forward to having a tooth extracted, let alone the slow, painful process of recuperation. Yet for some people this process represents more than just an unwelcome nuisance, especially if they develop the condition known as dry socket. If you would like to learn more about the nature of this debilitating condition, read on. This article will provide a useful overview of dry socket.

Basic Information

As hinted above, dry socket is a condition that can affect people in the wake of a dental extraction. It also goes by the medical name of alveolar osteitis. The good news is that dry socket remains a thankfully rare phenomenon; it is estimated that it afflicts no more than two to five percent of people. Yet those who do succumb to it following their oral surgery may suddenly find themselves in a terrible world of pain.

This pain has to do with inflammation taking place either in or adjacent to the alveolar bone—in other words, the bone where your former tooth was originally socketed. The pain of dry socket usually doesn't begin for a few days following extraction. In that time, your body's natural defenses will have formed a healing blood clot at the bottom of the empty socket. Dry socket is what happens when this blood clot is physically disturbed—or in some cases dissolves—thus exposing the nerves of the bone beneath.


People suffering from dry socket are often dismayed to hear that there is no real solution to the problem. All that can be done is to give the body time to form another blood clot—hopefully one that remains in place this time. Of course, it can take several weeks for this to happen.

In the meantime, it is common to wear a special dressing over the socket. This will prevent painful stimuli from reaching the nerves, while also promoting a quick healing process. If the pain is intense enough, a dentist or doctor may prescribe painkillers to help manage the discomfort.

Prevention Tactics

It is important to be aware that, while dry socket cannot always be prevented, there are many things that can be done to reduce the chances of it occurring. This is especially true for those who use tobacco produces regularly. It has been found that smokers develop dry socket at a higher rate, thanks to the fact that tobacco and smoke hamper your body's natural healing abilities. Ceasing the use of tobacco products in the days before and the days following an extraction will help to reduce the chances of dry socket occurring.

For more information, contact local professionals like Renovo Endodontic Studio.


9 March 2017

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