Can You See Your Jawbone After Tooth Extraction?

Posted on 5/1/2024 by New York Oral, Maxillofacial, and Implant Surgery
happy male patient in the dental chair giving an 'okay' sign with his hand that he is healing from oral surgeryIf you can see your jawbone after tooth extraction, you are dealing with a serious dental condition called dry socket. A dry socket describes the situation where you can actually see your jawbone at the point where your dentist removed a tooth. Under normal circumstances, your tooth socket should bleed and clot properly to seal off your jawbone after tooth extraction.

The Healing Process After Tooth Extraction

Tooth extraction usually heals within a short time. A blood clot should form at the extraction site within the first 24 hours after the procedure. Blood clots are vital to the healing process as they stop bleeding while protecting nerve and bone tissue from damage.

Swelling around the extraction site can peak after about two days. Home remedies, such as applying a cold compress at intervals of 15 minutes, can manage the swelling.

After 72 hours, your tooth socket should be healed completely, and all the bleeding should be gone. The swelling will also subside, even if the area may still feel tender around the socket. It is important not to dislodge the blood clot because that could lead to a painful dry socket. The blood clot will enhance your healing, and the gum tissue will start closing around the socket. After 7-10 days, the hole left behind at the socket should be fully closed, and the gum tissue should be the only thing you see after tooth extraction.

What Causes a Dry Socket?

A dry socket, also called alveolar osteitis, occurs when you can still see your jawbone after tooth extraction. A dry socket is a rare condition, occurring in about 2 percent of all tooth extractions. Most of these cases occur following a particularly difficult tooth removal. However, a few factors increase your risk of having a dry socket, such as drinking through a straw, which creates a suction force that can dislodge the blood clots. Swishing too vigorously can also dislodge the blood clot and cause a dry socket.
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