Dry Socket - Symptoms

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What are dry socket symptoms and signs?

A tell-tale sign of dry socket is when there is partial or total loss of a blood clot. The jawbone may be visible in the socket as a white area where it would normally be covered with a blood clot or healing membrane. Dry socket is not associated with an infection and, therefore, not accompanied with fever, swelling, or redness.

Symptoms of a dry socket include a throbbing steady pain that presents a few days after a tooth extraction. The pain may radiate to other parts of the head such as the ears and eyes on the same side of the face. A foul smell and an unpleasant taste in the mouth may also be present due to the accumulation of food debris and bacteria in the socket. A stiff jaw is not a typical symptom of dry socket but is often a coincidental symptom after an oral surgery procedure such as tooth extraction.

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See what others are saying

Comment from: Natcat, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: September 15

My dentist looked surprised after extracting the tooth in front of upper wisdom tooth. She said it was a dry socket. I never had one before. First 2 nights I took 2 painkillers as a precaution, today is 5th day and I haven't had any pain whatsoever. From 2nd day I rinsed with salty water 3 times a day. In fact this was the easiest extraction I've ever had.

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Comment from: Nanci, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: November 24

I am into day 30 of dry socket. The pain is like none other. I have been reading stories of people in their dentist offices crying because the pain is excruciating. I too am one of those patients. I know why people are driven to suicide because of pain. It is nothing like I have experienced before, I think the difficult thing is not knowing when it will stop. I have the classic nerve pain along me entire left jaw and up into my ear. The ear pain is something else too. I even asked for a nerve block but they won't do it.

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