Does Normal Socket After Tooth Extraction Look Pink?

May 15, 2024
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If you have gotten a tooth pulled out for the first time it is natural to wonder what a normal healing socket after tooth extraction looks and feels like. While some discomfort and swelling are common, you must learn about the signs of normal socket vs. dry socket (a complex post-op complication) for a smooth recovery.

What Does A Normal Socket After Tooth Extraction Look Like?

A normal socket after tooth extraction has a blood clot (a fibrous mesh) on the site, indicating that proper healing has started. This clot protects the bone and sensitive nerves underneath, and with time, it dissolves and is replaced by new tissue and bone.

Signs of a Normal Socket After Tooth Extraction

A normal socket after tooth extraction has the following look:

  • Significant pain reduction: Pain gets better with every passing day.
  • Blood clot retention: The blood clot or scab gains strength and secures its place in the area where the tooth used to be.
  • No bony exposure: There is no white stuff at the extraction healing site or the appearance of bone sticking out.
  • No bleeding: No trace of blood in the mouth.
  • No metallic or salty taste: The mouth does not taste metallic or salty.
  • No halitosis: There is no sign of halitosis or bad mouth odor.

What Does A Dry Socket Look Like?

A dry socket, also referred to as alveolar osteitis, is a painful complication that occurs after a tooth extraction when the healing is inadequate. Usually, this condition results from a blood clot dislodging that normally forms in the socket or does not form properly, exposing the underlying bone and nerves.

Causes

  1. Bacterial infection: A pre-existing bacterial infection surrounding the extracted tooth site may increase the risk of developing a dry socket.
  2. Surgical trauma: Extensive, difficult, or traumatic tooth extractions may serve as a driving factor
  3. Inadequate blood supply: Problems with the jawbone, like inadequate blood supply or compromised bone structure, may further increase the likelihood of developing the issue
  4. Smoking tobacco: Chemicals present in cigarettes and other forms of tobacco prevent or slow down healing and contaminate the wound site. The act of sucking also physically dislodges the blood clot before it gains strength
  5. Use of oral contraceptives: High estrogen levels that are due to birth control pills disrupt the normal healing process
  6. Poor oral hygiene and no care post-op: If proper at-home care is not established, you may do things to disrupt the formation of the crucial blood scab.
  7. Previous history of dry socket: If you have had a dry socket in the past, you are more likely to develop it again after another extraction. Therefore, ask your dentist to carefully analyze the situation

Closing Note

We urge you to contact our dental care expert immediately at Smile Designs Dentistry to learn more about dry sockets and tooth extractions we do in our facility. You can trust Dr. Sanjay Kumar Vanjarapu, DDS, extensively trained by the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA), for all your dental needs. Contact us at any of the following locations:

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