Dry socket is known as alveolar osteitis in medical terms. It is a painful dental problem that develops few days after a tooth is pulled out. It is common problem with people who have their wisdom tooth extracted. The tooth extraction leads to a blood clot at the site of extraction. This protects the bone and nerve endings. Dry socket occurs when the blood clot gets dislodged or dissolves before the wound has healed.
Reasons for Dry socket
However the exact cause for dry socket is still uncertain, the following are the various possibilities for the condition.
- Bacterial infection
- Bone and tissue trauma
- Small piece of bone remaining in the wound
There are various factors that increase the risk of developing dry socket.
- Excessive smoking
- Use of tobacco products
- Having dense jawbone
- Taking oral contraceptives
- Past history of dry sockets
- Oral infection
- Use of corticosteroids
Symptoms of Dry Socket
The below given are the various symptoms that are experienced during dry socket.
- Throbbing pain in and near the socket
- Pain in the same side of the face as the extraction
- Visible bone in the socket that is sensitive to touch
- Swelling in the soft tissues surrounding the soket
- Bad breath
- Bad taste in the mouth
- Swollen lymph nodes
- Mild fever
Home Remedies for Dry Socket
It is important to treat the dry socket immediately as this may lead to severe infections and pain. The discomfort can be reduced using few natural ingredients. The home remedies given below help in healing and reducing the discomfort. However, it is always better to consult the dentist immediately if pain is unbearable.
1. Clove Oil
Clove oil is very effective in treating dry socket. Its anesthetic and analgesic properties help in reducing the throbbing pain that makes it difficult even to move the head. It acts as a physical barrier between the exposed bone along with nerve endings and the oral environment. It also relives the pain and discomfort.
How to Use?
- Dab a cotton ball in clove oil
- Place it in the socket fir 1 minutes
- Remove the swab and rinse the mouth with warm water
- Repeat this remedy once or twice a day
2. Cold Compress
Cold compress is an effective remedy for alleviating the pain due to dry socket. It reduces the pain in the cheeks and jaws. Due to the cold temperature there is a numbing effect on the nerves. This in turn reduces the pain.
How to Use?
- Take few ice cubes and wrap it in a thin washcloth
- Place it on the cheeks on the affected part
- Hold it for few minutes
- Repeat 4 to 5 times a day until the pain and swelling reduces
- Use warm compress after two days of using cold compress
3. Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil has natural antiseptic property that kills harmful bacteria. It also heals conditions like dry socket and can prevent the infection of the tooth and gums in case the impurities are stuck where raw bone is exposed. According to a study published in the Brazilian Journal of Pharmacognosy, the influence of tea tree oil on the healing of infected dental alveoli and it was concluded that it works as a promising adjunctive wound treatment.
How to Use?
- Dab a cotton swab in diluted tea tree essential oil
- Gently press the swab against the area of the dry socket
- Wait for 5 minutes and then rinse it thoroughly with lukewarm water
- Repeat this twice or thrice a day as required
4. Black Tea Bags
Black tea bags are very effective in reducing the pain caused by a dry socket. The tannic acid present in the tea bag works like a natural antibiotic and helps in reducing the pain and swelling.
How to Use?
- Dip a tea bag in a cup of hot water
- After 5 minutes, remove and squeeze out the excess water
- Put in the tea bag in the refrigerator for 15 minutes
- Set aside the tea bag to cool down
- Place the tea bag on the dry socket
- Bite the tea bag with the teeth to keep it in place for at least 5 to 10 minutes
- Use the black to rinse the mouth
- Repeat as and when required
5. Salt Water Rinse
According to a study, saline mouth rinses are beneficial in prevention of alveolar osteitis after dental extractions. It must be performed twice a day to reap its benefits in treating the pain and swelling due to dry socket. The saline water also helps in preventing any further oral infections.
How to Use?
- Mix half teaspoon of table salt in a glass of warm water
- Stir until the salt dissolves completely
- Use the solution to rinse the mouth twice or thrice a day
The above home remedies are highly effective in treating dry socket problems. When the pain is unbearable, it is better to consult the dentist to get it diagnosed properly. These remedies do not have any side effects unlike the prescription medicines. Hence this can be safely used along with the other medications.
- Home Remedies for Dry Hands
- Home Remedies for Dysuria