Question

Dry Socket

How do medications treat dry socket?

A Answers (3)

  • ADe Vizio, DMD, Dentistry, answered on behalf of Colgate
    A dry socket is treated with a medicated dressing to stop the pain and encourage the area to heal. Dry sockets develop in about 3% to 4% of all tooth extractions. It happens when a blood clot doesn't form in the hole or the blood clot breaks off or breaks down too early, exposing the underlying bone to air and food. This can be very painful and can cause a bad odor or taste. Infection can set in after an extraction, although this is unlikely if you have a healthy immune system. If you have an infection, your dentist usually will prescribe antibiotics.
  • Ask you dentist about medications and other treatments for dry socket, which is caused when the area around where a tooth was extracted is slow to heal. The dentist may recommend a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug, such as aspirin or ibuprofen, or prescribe other pain relievers. The dentist's treatment may include cleaning the site and placing a medicated dressing in the socket, which helps provide relief of pain.
  • Several medications can be used to treat dry socket. The dentist may pack dressings medicated with an anesthetic into the socket to relieve pain. You may also get oral pain medications. There are both prescription and over-the-counter options. If you develop an infection due to dry socket, antibiotics might be necessary, too.

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What are the treatment options for dry socket?