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From time to time, there may be a need for you to have a tooth extracted. Even if you brush and floss, you may need to have your wisdom teeth pulled, or there may be other reasons for an extraction. When teeth need to be extracted, Dr. Hanna at Paul Hanna, DMD PC in New London, Connecticut will discuss the proper after-care to make sure that you avoid any problems. One of the biggest problems you may encounter is dry socket.

After a tooth is extracted, a blood clot forms in the space where the tooth used to sit. If that clot breaks or is dislodged, the nerves and the bone in that area will be exposed, and that can be very painful. You may treat it with an over-the-counter pain reliever, but you should contact our office at 860-442-3323 as soon as you start to experience the symptoms of dry socket. Besides pain, the symptoms may include swollen glands or an unpleasant taste in your mouth. You may also run a low-grade fever. Usually, these symptoms begin to show up one to three days after your tooth has been removed.

Dr. Hanna will clean the socket, and apply a dressing. The doctor may prescribe an antibiotic, or anti-inflammatory drug if necessary. In most cases, the problem should disappear within 24 hours of treatment.

There are things you can do to prevent dry socket. Along with practicing good oral hygiene, an antibacterial rinse or mouthwash will help keep the extraction site clean. Avoiding smoking and other tobacco use, will also reduce the risk of dry mouth. You should also avoid using straws after the extraction.