A dry socket is an uncomfortable condition and results in delayed healing. It typically occurs when something moves or dissolves the blood clot from the socket. During a tooth extraction, you naturally develop a blood clot over the site that protects and heals your underlying bone and nerve endings. Therefore, to ensure quick and effective healing of the site, this blood clot needs to stay in place. However, this clot can sometimes become dislodged, leading you to develop an alveolar osteitis or a dry socket.
Here’s how you can take proper care of your mouth after tooth extraction to prevent dry socket:
The movement of cheek muscles caused due to air suction by straw can lead to dislodging of the blood clot. Therefore, avoid using straws for at least a week after your tooth extraction.
Avoid smoking and tobacco
People who smoke or consume tobacco tend to develop dry sockets after tooth extraction because the accelerated inhalation of smoke can dislodge your blood clot. Additionally, the chemicals in other tobacco products can also disrupt the healing process, leading to significant infections. Moreover, if you are planning to resume tobacco consumption after your surgery, consult your dentist or oral surgeon when you are allowed to start.
You should only eat soft foods on the first-day post-surgery, including applesauce, mashed potatoes, and yogurt. However, from the second day onwards, you can try incorporating heartier foods into your diet.
Make sure to avoid soup as its consumption can lead to dislodging of the blood clot. Moreover, you should consider avoiding crunchy foods, nuts, seeds, and other sticky foods that are prone to get stuck in your socket.
Proper oral hygiene
Maintaining oral hygiene is one of the effective ways to prevent dry sockets. It is crucial in preventing germs and other oral infections from breaking down the blood clot. Therefore, consider asking your dentist about the proper techniques to properly care for your mouth post-surgery. They may suggest you rinse your mouth the first day after surgery and then start gentle brushing from the second day onwards.
Maintaining proper care of the site
Stringently following your dentist’s instructions on proper oral care post-surgery is recommended to ensure a speedy recovery. This enables people to feel better within three days after the treatment and complete recovery within a week. Some crucial tips to follow post-surgery care are:
- Drink plenty of fluids.
- Brush your teeth gently.
- Use saltwater rinse to maintain the oral hygiene of your mouth.
- Avoid food and beverages that can disrupt the blood clot.
- Take proper rest from strenuous work.
- Treat swelling externally by using ice packs.
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