Teeth Removal Aftercare: 3 Tips To Relieve Pain From Dry Sockets

After you've gotten a tooth extracted from your mouth, you'll need to take special care of the wounded area in order to prevent dry sockets. The pain from dry sockets typically emerge 2 to 4 days after the tooth is extracted, and the phenomenon has an occurrence rate of approximately 2% among all tooth extractions. Basically, your jawbone becomes inflamed from either a partial or total loss of the blood clot that usually sits within the tooth socket after an extraction. If you have dry sockets, you'll experience unbearable pain that is accompanied by bad breath. While the issue will resolve itself naturally, here are 3 tips that you can implement to relieve pain from a dry socket and to expedite the rate of recovery.

Apply Eugenol or Clove Oil Directly Onto the Socket

Essential oils can do wonders in providing pain relief. They can also be effective disinfectants that keep bacteria at bay and prevent infections from spreading and worsening. If you're dealing with a dry socket, clove oil, otherwise known as eugenol, will become your best friend. Not only has eugenol been traditionally used as an analgesic and an antiseptic in dental practices, but they are also thought to have antibacterial and antimicrobial properties.

Generally speaking, your dentist will usually apply a bit of eugenol with the dressing used to cover the socket. However, if you have a dry socket nonetheless, you can use a cotton swab and directly apply some eugenol onto the dry socket yourself. You should experience some type of pain relief immediately once the eugenol is applied. You'll need to dilute the eugenol in some vegetable oil before applying it onto your gums.

Place an Ice Pack on Your Face

Another way to obtain some temporary pain relief is to place an ice pack on your face near the area where the dry socket is located. The ice pack will help numb the pain and will also keep inflammation down. The ice can also reduce swelling and prevent the wound from bleeding into the tissues. It can also reduce muscle pain and spasms as well and will prevent excess tissue fluid from gathering and accumulating in one position. This is what usually causes stiffness.

Keep in mind that an ice pack only provides temporary relief. It will not provide permanent pain relief from dry sockets, and you will need to seek additional treatments and measures to aid in your recovery. You need to carefully monitor the condition of your skin if you choose to use ice packs. Remove the ice pack if your skin becomes red or a bright pink.

Eat Soft Foods and Avoid Sucking Through a Straw

Your jawbone and gums are particularly vulnerable if you are dealing with a dry socket. If you're not gentle with the wounded area or careful, you can easily exacerbate your condition and cause it to worsen. The last thing you want to do is to open any wounds that may be already healing. To prevent your situation from worsening, try to eat soft foods as much as possible. Liquid diets will place the least amount of strain and pressure on your facial tissues and muscles. Avoid hard foods and snacks, like chips and even apples, until the dry socket has fully healed. 

You also should avoid drinking through a straw or doing any type of sucking motions with your mouth. This can cause any remaining blood clot left in the socket to become dislodged, which can cause old wounds to open up again, and you'll find yourself having to deal with the situation all over again.

If you have any questions about teeth removal and the recovery process, talk with a dentist in your area, such as those at Abbott Family Dentistry, LLC.