Welcome to Padstow Dental Centre's blog post. Here we introduce you to new staff members and recent activities that we are involved in. To get more involved with us, you can visit our contact page and submit your enquiry to us.
Dry socket is the term of a possible dental complication following a tooth extraction. The ‘socket’ refers to the space or hole left in the bone where the tooth has been removed. When the socket becomes ‘dry’, it means that the clot which naturally forms in this space has been lost or not formed correctly. If the blood clot has been lost or has not formed correctly there is nothing present in this space to protect the exposed bone and nerves in the jaw. This is why a dry socket often causes so much pain.
Symptoms of Dry Socket
- Severe pain within a few days following a tooth extraction
- Pain extending from the jaw up towards the eye and temple region on the same side as the extraction
- Bad breath and a bad taste in the mouth
- Visible bone or an empty socket/space where the tooth has been extracted
While you should expect some pain after an extraction, extreme prolonged pain that increases as time passes is something to be concerned about and if this occurs you should contact your dentist immediately.
Risks of Getting a Dry Socket
Not everyone who has an extraction will get a dry socket, some factors which increase the risk of someone getting a dry socket are;
- A history of dry socket from previous extractions
- Poor oral hygiene
- Smoking and alcohol consumption
- Oral contraceptives
- Infection or bacteria in the gums or around the extraction area
There are a few preventable measures which can be taken to reduce the risks of a dry socket, these include;
- Following post-operative instructions from your Dentist
- Avoiding smoking and alcohol for at least 48 hours
- Avoiding drinking through a straw or rinsing/spitting vigorously
- Keeping up good oral hygiene
What Do I Do if I Get a Dry Socket?
Contact your dentist as soon as possible and schedule an appointment. Your dentist may treat the dry socket by clearing out any food or particles present, placing medicated dressings or antiseptics in the wound, providing you with antiseptic gels and rinses or prescribing anti-biotics.
Over one-third of pre-schoolers have never seen a dentist and most parents believe children don't need to see one before they're three years old. Yet one-quarter of Australian children have tooth decay that requires filling by early primary school. One in 10 require an extraction.
Concerned at the alarming rise of toddlers with dental cavities, Padstow dentist Bill Kalis and his team are using Dental Health Week (August 5-11) to launch a pilot aimed at improving the oral health of young children in the area and beyond. Dr Kalis is planning to start the crusade at the Rise and Shine Kindergarten group, marking his 25th year as a dentist, after seeing scores of children at his surgery suffering the effects of sugary drinks.
"I'm hoping the visit will dispel children's fears about visiting the dentist and teach them about caring for their teeth, including brushing, flossing and diet," Dr Kalis said. "I'm also planning to run an information night for parents because so many with young children seem not to be aware of the harmful effects of sugar, which is in so much of what we eat today.
"I just see so many children needing treatment and want to reduce the potentially avoidable hospitalisations.” I plan to screen children at the childcare centre and then return for follow up support and education; the message is that going to the dentist is a safe and fun experience." Dr Kalis said parents needed to become more aware about the dental health of their families."No one is immune, however. Even my son Steven, 7, has had a couple of cavities which caught us off guard despite our vigilance. It's just the amount of sugar in food these days and the inevitable kids' parties and spoiling by grandparents." For parents requiring more info about good dental health advice, visit www.adansw.com.au, www.padstowdentalcentre.com.au or www.protectingtinyteeth.com.au
Swelling and Bruising
Some swelling and bruising is normal after surgery. Generally swelling takes about three days to reach its peak, after which it will slowly discolour with time and subside over about ten to fourteen days. Bruising can vary from some minor facial bruising to more extensive bruising that may extend to the lower eye lids or down the neck.
Ice packs will help in the first 24 hours. Sleeping with your head elevated will also help.
Occasionally some oozing may occur from third molar and extraction sites, which can be controlled with the use of pressure packs. We will provide you with mouth packs to take home, which should be placed over the wounds and pressure applied by biting firmly on the packs. Rest quietly with your head elevated.
Wound Care and Hygiene
It is essential that you maintain exceptional oral hygiene using a combination of Savacol mouthwash, in addition to your regular tooth brushing. You should begin your mouthwashes and tooth brushing the day after surgery, aim to use at least 5-6 mouthwashes per day. While gentle tooth brushing around the wounds may cause minor bleeding, it is still vitally important to remove food debris and plaque from the area
You will need to maintain a diet of very soft food for at least the first three days after your surgery, eating foods of a “scrambled egg” consistency. Please note that is very important that you avoid hot foods within 24 hours of your surgery. You should be able to revert to your normal diet around 5-7 days after your operation.
Smoking & Alcohol
Smoking and alcohol can negatively affect the outcome of any surgical procedure, causing conditions such as inflammation of intraoral wounds and delayed healing. For these reasons, we strongly advise you to avoid smoking altogether for at least two weeks and alcohol for at least 3-5 days after your intraoral surgical procedure.
At Padstow Dental Centre, providing our patients with a smooth procedure, good experience and comfortable recovery is very important to us when it comes to the often daunting prospect of having complex wisdom teeth removed.The first week after wisdom teeth removal surgery is generally when you can anticipate to experience the most discomfort but following the steps below will go a long way toward smoothing the path and getting things back to normal.
On the Day
Before the procedure you will be given a combination of IV sedation followed by local anaesthetic. This will alleviate any anxiety as well as any potential discomfort. The sedation also works to limit any memory of the actual procedure afterwards. You will feel you like you have woken from a deep sleep.
Depending on the complexity of the teeth being removed, you will likely feel some discomfort and possibly experience some mild to moderate swelling in the region(s). There may also be slight bleeding, oozing or redness in your saliva but we will ensure you are given the correct aftercare at the time and will check on you frequently during the recovery period where you are kept under observation. No significant pain will be felt in the first 3-4 hours as the local anaesthetic will still be active. You will be provided with mouth packs as well as a prescription for analgesics and antibiotics to continue at home upon discharge. Often we will arrange this ahead of the day when your booking is made so you don't have to worry about running around to pharmacies post procedure. You will need a responsible friend or family member under who's care we can discharge you to ensure you get home safely.
Our dentists will run you through some instructions to follow at home to speed up your recovery time and these will be provided in writing too.
Here are some quick points on the Do's and Dont's:
- Avoid strenuous exercise
- Do not spit
- Do not drink from a straw
- Do not smoke or consume alcohol
- Do not agitate with your tongue or toothpick.
- Take medication as instructed
Issues to Bring up with your Dentist
Happy Friday everyone.....we would like to say a huge thank you to everyone that has booked in for their preventative care visits!
If you would like to have your teeth professionally cleaned and looking beautiful for Christmas, and don't have a booking we have allocated extra days in our schedule to assist so please call ASAP if you would like one of these precious appointments! You may even like to start to whiten your teeth just in time for the holiday season.
We have been busy - working hard on putting together our brand new Website. We hope you like it!